Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Autographa precationis (Guenée, 1852)
Plusia precationis Guenée, 1852
Phytometra precationis ab. tana Strand, 1917
* phylogenetic sequence #931191
forewing length 14-18 mm (Pogue, 2005)(1)
Adults - inner part of stigma hollow, V-shaped, usually connected to outer part, but frequently separated into two separate spots. See four ways to distinguish adults of this species from Chrysodeixis includens
in "See also
" section below.
Nova Scotia to Ontario, south to Georgia, west to Wisconsin, and Kansas (Eichlin & Cunningham, 1978).(2)
Adults fly from April to October in 3 or more broods (Covell, 1984).(3)
Larvae feed on a variety of forbs (non-grass herbs) such as asteraceae, cabbage, plantain, clover
Mated pair; eggs; larva; larva; cocoon; adult
Lafontaine and Poole have found the following four differences between two species that are often confused - Chrysodeixis includens
and Autographa precationis
1. A. precationis has a distinct rusty-red coloration and lacks brassy reflections in the forewing, whereas C. includens has a buffy-brown forewing and has strong brassy reflections.
2. The reniform spot of A. precationis is surrounded by a thin white line that is absent in C. includens.
3. C. includens has a strong brass-colored patch between the reniform spot and the postmedial line that is missing in A. precationis.
4. C. includens has a distinct dark spot in the fringe of the outer margin that is absent in A. precationis.
Images of both species together
for comparison (Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility). Also see photos of Chrysodeixis includens
from the French Antilles
Covell Jr., C. V. 1984. A field guide to the moths of eastern North America. p.157, pl.31 #14 (3)
Eichlin, T. D. & H. B. Cunningham 1978. The Plusiinae (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) of America north of Mexico, emphasizing genitalic and larval morphology. USDA Tech. Bulletin 1567: 1-122 (PDF
Lafontaine, J. D. & R. W. Poole 1991. Moths of America North of Mexico, Fascicle 25.1: p.82; pl.2.3-5
Pogue, M. G. 2005. The Plusiinae (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) of Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Zootaxa 1032: 1–28(1)