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Adult Moth - Xylena nupera

Adult Moth - Xylena nupera
Sitka County, Alaska, USA
September 19, 2011
Size: >1in
Not sure about the protocol for adding shots of an adult reared from a caterpillar, but for now I've gone ahead and added this to the caterpillar shot. The caterpillar was found by my son in late July and seemed to want to dig into dirt. We let it do so in a bucket of soil and let it sit in a rearing cage out on the porch. This morning my kids told me there was a big moth in the cage, and this rather striking large moth is what we found.

Images of this individual: tag all
Caterpillar - Xylena nupera Adult Moth - Xylena nupera

Moved from Swordgrass Moths.

Moved from Moths.
Well that didn't take long!

Xylena species
It's one of the Swordgrass moths... Great shot! :)

Xylena spp
Moths of Western North America says three species in this genus occur in the west. However, it appears only two are mentioned. X. nupera and X. brucei. Based on the adult plate, this one looks more like X. brucei, but the description of the larvae suggests they are not green. So perhaps the best bet is the third western species which looks like it is X. cineritia - photos on bugguide do seem to be a reasonable match.

I'm not sure if it's mentioned on any of the posts on here, but the images for X. brucei and X. nupera on plate 53 of the Moths of Western North America are flip-flopped (the same happened on plate 41 with the images of Hyles gallii and H. euphorbiae). I agree that this moth is a closer match for #36, which is actually X. nupera. The thick "dash across median area slightly below end of basal dash" present in this moth is described in Covell as a distinguishing feature for X. nupera, and X. nupera larvae can be green, so X. nupera seems to be the most likely ID for this moth.

Moved from Butterflies and Moths.
Definitely appropriate to link these images. This is something in Noctuinae; I've moved it to the moth section for now so the moth people will see it.

Not sure about protocol for linking immature and mature pictures of the same individual. If this isn't appropriate, please let me know and I'll unlink them.

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