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Species Cosmia praeacuta - Hodges#9814

Cosmia praecuta - Cosmia praeacuta Cosmia praeacuta Cosmia praeacuta Cosmia praeacuta Sympistis sp.? - Cosmia praeacuta Cosmia praeacuta Possible Cosmia praeacuta - Cosmia praeacuta Arizona Moth - Cosmia praeacuta
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 Noctuidae (Owlet Moths)
Subfamily Noctuinae (Cutworm or Dart Moths)
Tribe Xylenini
Subtribe Cosmiina
Genus Cosmia
Species praeacuta (Cosmia praeacuta - Hodges#9814)
Hodges Number
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
formerly Achytonix praeacuta; the genus Achytonix was synonymized with Cosmia in 2003 by Lafontaine and Troubridge
Achytonix nigramacula
A. orae
one of 4 species in this genus in North America listed at All-Leps
wingspan 25-34 mm, based on six Internet photos
Adult: forewing medium gray (to almost black out to subterminal line in some individuals) with distinct black lines and black-rimmed spots filled with ground color; reniform spot slightly curved (but not bent into V shape as in C. elisae); orbicular spot oval or irregular-shaped, sometimes connecting to reniform spot; orbicular and reniform spots usually filled with yellowish to reddish-brown with some gray shading; claviform spot narrow, small, or absent; AM line thick/heavy, slightly arc-shaped or almost straight; PM line irregular, with inconspicuous teeth; subterminal line irregular, jagged, sometimes with paler shading beyond it; terminal line usually continuous, sometimes broken into black dashes; diffuse dark spot near anal angle; hindwing medium to dark gray; fringe pale

Larva: head green; body green with white middorsal, subdorsal, and spiracular stripes (the same as in Cosmia elisae)
British Columbia to California, east to Utah and New Mexico
coniferous forests in western mountains; adults are nocturnal and come to light
adults fly from June to September
larvae in June and July
larvae feed on foliage of Douglas-fir and other conifers
Often misidentified as Cosmia (=Achytonix) epipaschia, a species which is known only from a single specimen (the holotype) collected in New Mexico and described by Grote in 1883. See Remarks section on genus page for comments quoted from the Print Reference below.
See Also
Cosmia elisae forewing reniform spot is bent into a V shape, and its AM line is thin, slightly sinuate, and bends outward at inner margin

larva is probably indistinguishable from Cosmia elisae
Print References
Lafontaine, J.D., and J.T. Troubridge. 2003. Review of the genus Cosmia (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae) in North America, with description of a new species. The Canadian Entomologist. 135: 325-336.
Internet References
pinned adult image (Bruce Walsh, Moths of Southeastern Arizona)
pinned adult image mislabeled as species epipaschia (California Dept. of Food and Agriculture)
pinned adult image mislabeled as species epipaschia, plus description, habitat, flight season, foodplants (Jeff Miller, Macromoths of Northwest Forests and Woodlands, USGS)
live larva image mislabeled as species epipaschia, plus description, foodplants, seasonality (Jeffrey Miller, Caterpillars of Pacific Northwest Forests and Woodlands, USGS)
list of specimens collected in California plus locations and dates (U. of California at Berkeley)
presence in Utah; list (Joel Johnson, Utah Lepidopterists Society)
presence in Oregon; list (Oregon State U.)
distribution in Canada British Columbia only (U. of Alberta, using CBIF data)