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Moth, South Florida - Sisyracera inabsconsalis

Moth, South Florida - Sisyracera inabsconsalis
Hollywood, Broward County, Florida, USA
December 25, 2012
Size: ~2cm
Sunning itself on a palm frond, about 1m above ground.

Note the name change
Landry (2016) synonymized Sisyracera contortilinealis (Hampson, 1895) with S. inabsconsalis (Möschler, 1890). See remarks under the species page for a link to the paper.

Moved from Sisyracera.

Might this be the Sisyracera caterpillar?
About a meter from where I found the adult moth I found this caterpillar today. A small lizard had partially extracted it from its web on a Marlberry tree (Ardesia escallonioides). I removed the caterpillar and part of its web from the tree and brought it into the house. Four hours on it appears not to have survived the lizard (or my "rescue"). There should be three images of the caterpillar added to the original adult moth image. The ruler is indexed in millimeters.

In the future ...
Do Not add an different specimen to one that has already been ID'd. Thank you

Sisyracera Moth
Moved from Moths.

Mark de Silva's ID is tentative, as the specimen has never been verified. It is probably a newly named species, as it's not listed on Hodges 1983. Someone with access to papers on neotropical species will need to further research. Thanks for the heads up, William.

A Puerto Rican?

Sisyracera contortilinealis perhaps?

"If it's got wings, all bets are off."

How did you find this page?
MPG revised the site over a year ago. I didn't know there were any SHTML sheets that could still be accessed. Most show as a broken link. This is the page I finally located it on. Thanks for your help. BTW all bets aren't off ... you still owe me a Varsity :)

I, in a rare Eureka moment, ...
... tho't there must be a connection between a Florida moth and Cuba. I searched "Pyraustinae of Cuba" and came upon reference to moths of Puerto Rico. I clicked into that site and, ta daa, found the animal. Among other things, hot air produces hurricanes and other winds, and doubtless disperse these animals across the region. Another possibility is introduction through commerce. I like the hurricane scenario. ;)


PS I defer to the Florida expert: Sisyracera inabsconsalis. But I'll be patient.

Dr. Hayden
I emailed Dr. Hayden for some photos and technical papers on these moths. Also, notice that Sisyracera subulalis has been seen in south-most Texas and Florida during September & October ... hurricane season :)

hot air dispersal -- Off Topic
The North Atlantic Trade Winds tend to carry "stuff" westward from the Antilles toward the mainland. We like that.

Thirty-six years working with hurricanes and neither I nor my professional colleagues ever liked that method of dispersal. It's TOO efficient: houses, cars, people---you name it, a hurricane will disperse it. Most often bit by bit.

Professional colleagues?
Would you please take a few minutes to add some info on your account page about your experience? It’s always a big help to editors, knowing a contributor's background. Thank you.

Background info added
Please let me know if the info I just added will be of any use.

No wonder you know about hurricanes. We've had some bad tornadoes in Mobile this past week. Fortunately, the Zimlich Zone survived unscathed.

between tornadoes and hurricanes....
...I'd rather have hurricanes. There is some prep time with hurricanes and the top wind speeds are not as high.

I watched that nasty weather you got last week. I'm pleased to read that you were not impacted.

Thanks, Bill. I need to research to create a guide page. There is some controversy as to its placement.

You are quite welcome, sir.
I go by "Don".

I searched the web under "moths of Cuba" and found the reference cited.


Moved for Expert ID
Moved from ID Request.

No match in the specimen photos - yet.
Thanks for the suggestions for I.D. I've trawled without success through the BugGuide specimen photos (including Anageshna) for a match. None seems to have this amount of wing patterning, including the "Wylie E. Coyote" pattern from the middle of the abdomen to the tail.

Florida Moth Expert
A moth expert in Florida sends this note:

"I can get it to Pyralidae but not much further. "

She works at The Division of Plant Industry, Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. She is checking with her colleagues.

Moth I.D.'d by State of Florida expert--Sisyracera inabsconsalis
Here is the info abstracted from an email just received:

Wow. That moth is Sisyracera inabsconsalis (Möschler) or something close (Crambidae: Spilomelinae). We have one good specimen from the FL Keys, and another something that [was] recently sent from Key West....

This genus is yet another case where the identity is doubtful (there are multiple Caribbean species), the FSCA has only one or two specimens of variable quality....

FYI, its host plants are unknown.


James E. Hayden, Ph.D.
Florida State Collection of Arthropods, Lepidoptera
Division of Plant Industry
Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services

bandb (sounds like Benedictine and Brandy),
I'll contact Dr. Hayden to see if I can get more information on the species for the guide page. This is a very confusing genus, as I explained on guide pages.

Wish I knew ...
I do not recognize this moth, but it has a Pyraustinae-look about, possibly in Spilomelini tribe?


It looks like it's doing exercises with it's "arms" out front. I've never seen a moth do that.

Spilomelini will often stretch out like that

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