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Noctuid moth, genus Cucullia - Cucullia strigata - male

Noctuid moth, genus Cucullia - Cucullia strigata - Male
Prosser, Benton County, Washington, USA
March 10, 2006
Size: Wingspan: 33mm
This beauty was found at a porchlight on one of the first warm nights of the year (40+ degree F). It is a male (the slighltly serrate antennae are, unfortunately, not in focus). It belongs to the genus Cucullia, but the adults all look so similar to me, I have no idea which species. Any help would be appreciated, as the moth will belong to a teaching collection.

Thanks, Robin, for such detailed and helpful information! I really appreciate the time you put into the ID!

image moved
from Moths page to new species page which describes the adult, and lists features that distinguish it from similar species

looks most similar to
Cucullia strigata to me. The closest other candidate is probably C. albida, whose forewing has less conspicuous reniform and orbicular spots, and a slightly different pattern of streaking along the inner margin, and its hindwing has a more contrasting mix of dark gray and white - judging from these two CBIF images.
I looked through all the images by Bruce Walsh and CBIF and didn't see a closer match (most lack pale spots along the outer margin of the forewing).
One of the synonyms of C. strigata is ketchikana, so I'm assuming it occurs north to at least the Alaskan panhandle, and south to Oregon (it's listed as Rancora strigata at Oregon State U. but is missing from the list of California moths)

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