Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Chrysodeixis includens (Walker, )
Plusia includens Walker, 
* phylogenetic sequence #931170
forewing length 13-18 mm (Pogue, 2005)(1)
wingspan 28-39 mm (Covell, 1984)(2)
larvae mature to 35 mm (NCSU)
Larvae - a green looper which may have pale green longitudinal stripes and black dots. The head is small and the body widens at the rear (NCSU).
Common in the southeast and south central United States. Ranges as far north as Nova Scotia, southern Quebec and southern Ontario, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. Known in the west from southern Colorado, southern California, Arizona, and New Mexico (Pogue, 2005).(1)
This tropical moth often migrates far north in the spring and summer establishing breeding populations that are killed off with the freeze (Powell & Opler, 2009).(3)
Adults fly April-November (Covell, 1984).(2)
Larvae feed on a variety of plants (herbs), including soybeans, goldenrod, lettuce, sweet potato, and peanut. Other hosts include cotton, tomato, brassicas (cabbage, kale, broccoli), pea, tobacco, and cocklebur (NCSU).
Larvae can be a serious pest of crops, especially soybeans.
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.
See separate pinned images of A. precationis
and Chrysodeixis includens
at Canadian Forest Service. Also see other images of both species together
for comparison (Canadian Biodiversity Information Facility).
Covell Jr., C. V. 1984. A field guide to the moths of eastern North America. pp. 155-156, pl.31 #15 (2)
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. & B. C. Schmidt 2010. Annotated check list of the Noctuoidea (Insecta, Lepidoptera) of North America North of Mexico.(5)
Powell, J. A. & P. A. Opler 2009. Moths of Western North America. pl.49.26f; p.277(3)
- North Carolina State University fact sheet
live adult images
(Larry Line, Maryland)
pinned adult images
comparing P. includens
and A. precationis