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Species Orgyia detrita - Fir Tussock Moth - Hodges#8313

Orgyia detrita Caterpillar-1 - Orgyia detrita Caterpillars... - Orgyia detrita Caterpillars... - Orgyia detrita Moth Caterpillar - Orgyia detrita Tussock Moth - Orgyia detrita caterpillar - Orgyia detrita Beautiful Little Caterpillar - Orgyia detrita Asp or catepillar?   - Orgyia detrita
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Noctuoidea (Owlet Moths and kin)
Family Erebidae
Subfamily Lymantriinae (Tussock Moths)
Tribe Orgyiini
Genus Orgyia
Species detrita (Fir Tussock Moth - Hodges#8313)
Hodges Number
Other Common Names
Live Oak Tussock Moth
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Orgyia detrita Guérin-Meneville, 1832
Orgyia inornata Beutenmueller 1890
Orgyia kendalli Riotte 1972

Caterpillar: "The sides of the body are gray and supraspiracular warts are orange; the black middorsal stripe is flanked by yellow spots on A4-A7" - Wagner, p.450 (1).
"Unique to this species are the orange-colored spots along the back and sides." - University of Florida site.
There is a darker form of the caterpillar that is more distinctive - light forms may resemble Orgyia leucostigma.
Atlantic coast from Long Island to FL and west to Texas. More common than O. leucostigma in FL.
Life Cycle
Larva, cocoon, pupa, mating adults:
The hairs of the caterpillar may cause irritation to sensitive skin if you handle them, though they are not among the stinging caterpillars.
Orgyia detrita appear to have urticating setae on the tussocks of the caterpillar and other parts of the body as well. These urticating setae have distally projecting antrose barbs. In the similar Orgyia leucostigma (see See also section), these setae are attached to venom glands at the base (Gilmer, 1925).
See Also
Whitemarked Tussock Moth, Orgyia leucostigma. Its caterpillar is very similar but lacks orange warts along sides.
Print References
Gilmer, P. M. 1925. A comparative study of the poison apparatus of certain lepidopterous larvae. Annals of the Entomological Society of America 18: 203-239.
Wagner, Caterpillars of Eastern North America p.450 (1).
Internet References
Moth Photographers Group – species page (2)
BOLD Systems - images of DNA supported specimens (3)
Tussock Moths of Florida - all stages of the life cycle are illustrated
University of Florida images - two versions of the caterpillar