Friday, December 31, 2010

Bagworm Moth Caterpillar (Family Psychidae)

Larvae (bagworms) construct spindle-shaped bags covered with pieces of twigs, leaves, etc., and remain in them -- enlarging the bags as they grow -- until they pupate (also in the bag). Adult females remain in the bag, emitting pheromones which attract adult males to mate with them.  Males become more typical moths.  (There are 26 species in 13 genera in North America.)

Eggs are laid inside the bag, and when they hatch the larvae crawl away to begin construction of their own individual cases.

Source:  BugGuide


Thursday, December 30, 2010

Carolina Mantis (Stagmomantis carolina - male)

Male mantis consuming a moth.

Range: New Jersey south to Florida; west to Utah, Arizona, Texas, and through Mexico to Central America.

Season: Mantids are most commonly seen in late summer and early fall. Most are killed by cold weather in the fall, but can live longer in warmer climates in the southern US.

Food: Butterflies, moths, flies, small wasps and bees, true bugs and caterpillars -- most anything they can catch and consume.

Life Cycle: Eggs overwinter and hatch in early spring. Adults are mature by late summer and usually die by winter.

Remarks: Carolina Mantids are native to North America. They are smaller than their imported Asian cousins. Males have fully developed wings and can fly. Females do not.

Source: BugGuide


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Sweet Potato Harvest

Sweet potato vines right before harvest.  We grow our sweet potatoes under wire so the deer and rabbits cannot eat the vines.  I mow the vines to keep the aisles around the sweet potato bed open.  Otherwise, they'd probably cover half the garden.

We've grown an unknown variety of sweet potatoes for many years.  A friend gave us the sets.  We planted them.  They produced well.  We saved some potatoes for the following year's sets.  This system worked well for several years.  However, in recent years, production fell dramatically so we decided to try a different variety.  We chose the Beauregard developed by Louisiana State University

Beauregard sweet potatoes produced a lot of above ground growth.  I don't know if that is typical for this variety or the result of our growing conditions.

We normally let our sweet potatoes grow for as long as possible in the fall.  We wait until a frost is forecast before digging the potatoes.  Once the tender vines are killed by frost, you must dig the potatoes or they will rot.  However, first frost is late this year.  It still hasn't happened.  Jo and I decided to go ahead and dig our potatoes.  We figured they already grown as much as they were going to grow.  Additional time in the ground would probably only increase mice and vole damage.

A typical bunch of freshly dug sweet potatoes.

Beauregard produced well for us.  We harvested 163 pounds of sweet potatoes from a forty foot bed.  That's over 100 pounds more sweet potatoes than we harvested from the same amount of space last year.  Summer 2010 was hot and dry here.  I attribute the increased production to the Beauregard variety.

One of the more distinctive misshapen sweet potatoes

Beauregard produced many strangely shaped potatoes and seemed prone to more above ground growth that is normal for sweet potatoes.  I don't know if these traits are characteristic for the variety or the result of our growing conditions. We also had quite a bit of mice and vole damage, but that's not the potatoes' fault.  We've yet to come up with an organic solution for the mice and voles that eat our root crops.

Total harvest.  163 pounds of sweet potatoes.

So how do the Beauregard sweet potatoes taste?  We don't know yet.  Sweet potatoes must cure for a month or so before they're ready for eating.  They need time to convert starches into sugar. 


Wednesday, October 13, 2010


Cut logs waiting to be loaded and trucked to a chipper or pulp mill.

My neighbor has a major logging project going on in the woods between our place and his.  Jo and I can't yet figure out the full extent of the logging he has in mind, but it looks as if it might be extensive.  In the past, he's had the same section of woods selectively logged.  Only trees suitable for cutting into lumber were harvested.  This time, everything is being cut.  The logs will go to a pulp or wood chip mill since they're too small for saw logs.

Claw-jawed log loader on trailer.

The loggers began work on Monday.  So far, all they've done is clear a swath straight down the hill.  We have no idea of the purpose.

Log Skidder

This section of woods was heavily damaged during the severe ice storm of January, 2009.  None of the timber is suitable for anything except pulp or wood chips.  Our neighbor has talked about clearing this wooded area and turning it into another pasture for his cows since it's now "worthless".  We fear this logging may be the start of that clearing. Since the land belongs to him, all we can do is lament the loss.

Swath of timber cut straight down the hillside.


Wednesday, September 08, 2010

Carolina Mantis (Stagmomantis carolina)

Mothing Mantis

Some photograph moths; others eat them.

A male Carolina Mantis  (Stagmomantis carolina), a native species found throughout most of North and Central America.  Many consider mantids beneficial insects, though they're really indiscriminate predators and will eat just about anything they can catch.
(BugGuide Species Page)


Thursday, August 26, 2010

Tersa Sphinx (Xylophanes tersa)

Adult Tersa Sphinx moths have a pointed abdomen (though this one is a little bent) and contrasting black markings on hindwings.

Tersa Sphinx (Xylophanes tersa)

One of my favorite moths because they look so streamlined and sleek.

Range:  Massachusetts south to south Florida; west to Nebraska, New Mexico, and southern Arizona; south through Mexico, the West Indies, and Central America to Argentina. 

Food:  Adults take nectar from deep-throated  flowers.  They begin feeding around sunset.  I often see them feeding in our Datura right after the blooms have opened in the evening.

Caterpillar host plants include smooth buttonplant (Spermacoce glabra), starclusters (Pentas species), Borreria, Catalpa, and Manettia species.

Tersa Sphinx caterpillars occur in both green and brown forms.  This is a fairly early instar and only about 3/4" long.

.Tersa Sphinx caterpillars have one large eyespot  and six smaller eyespots in a line down their sides.  In earlier instars, smaller eyespots are barely visible and striping more pronounced.



Friday, August 20, 2010

Spangled Skimmer Dragonfly (Libellula cyanea)

Spangled Skimmer Dragonfly (Libellula cyanea)

A bit torn and tattered, but still able to catch insects like this Spotted Cucumber Beetle removed from our garden.

Spangled Skimmers are common in eastern North America as far west as Kansas and Texas.  Males are blue.  Females are brown with yellow stripes.  They prefer well-vegetated ponds and lakes and slow-moving sections of streams.  (BugGuide)


Friday, August 13, 2010

Okra (Abelmoschus esculentus)


Growing a veggie with it's origins in climates hotter than ours means it does just fine during our summer.  The exact origin of okra is in dispute, but it arrived in the Americas from West Africa.  (Wikipedia)


Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Gemmed Satyr (Cyllopsis gemma)

Gemmed Satyr (Cyllopsis gemma)

Range:  Southeastern United States south to central peninsular Florida; west to southeast Kansas, central Oklahoma, central Texas, and northeastern Mexico. 

Habitat:  Near open, wet woodland; grassy areas near water; near streams and ponds. 

Food:  Caterpillars feed on grasses including Bermuda Grass (Cynodon dactylon). Adults do not visit flowers but are attracted to rotting or overripe fruit.


Sunday, August 01, 2010

Eastern Pondhawk (Erythemis simplicicollis)

Female Eastern Pondhawk

Eastern Pondhawk (Erythemis simplicicollis)

Range:  Quebec and Maine to Florida, west to Mexico, north to Washington.
Food:  Smaller flying insects.
Habitat:  Primarily ponds. Adults often perch on the ground.

Eastern Pondhawk - Male

Female and young male Eastern Pondhawks are green with square, black spots on their abdomens.  As they age, males turn blue.  This male Pondhawk photographed by Jo is still showing just a little bit of green on its thorax.  BugGuide has and excellent series of photos showing both male and female Pondhawks are various stages of development.

Although we live up on a rocky ridge, there are evidently enough stock ponds around to provide suitable dragonfly habitat.


Saturday, July 31, 2010

Gold-and-brown Rove Beetle (Ontholestes cingulatus)

Gold-and-Brown Rove Beetle (Ontholestes cingulatus)

A relatively large rove beetle found throughout most of North America.  Adults eat maggots, mites, and beetle larvae.  Typically found in woodlands and wherever carrion occurs.  Several have been checking out our compost lately.


Thursday, July 29, 2010

Common Wood Nymph (Cercyonis pegala)

Common Wood Nymph (Cercyonis pegala)

Common throughout most of the United States and southern Canada.  (Range Map)  Adults feed on flower nectar and rotting fruit.  I reckon this watermelon rind in our compost qualifies as "rotting fruit".  (BugGuide Species Page)


Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Tobacco Hornworm (Manduca sexta)

Stretching To Reach The Best Parts

This is the critter most folks (including me) call a Tomato Hornworm, but according to BugGuide it is actually a Tobacco Hornworm.  The white literal stripes edged with black and the curved, reddish-colored terminal horn are distinctive.  Regardless, it is the larva of a Carolina Sphinx Moth and can often be found munching on members of the Nightshade family throughout most of North and South America.  (We've also found them eating pepper plants in our garden.)

(The University of Florida has an excellent page comparing Tobacco and Tomato Hornworms, including adult moth images.)


Monday, July 26, 2010

White-lined Sphinx Moth (Hyles lineata)

White-lined Sphinx Moth (Hyles lineata)

A widespread moth found throughout most of North America, Central America, West Indies, also parts of Eurasia, Africa.  Adults take nectar.  Larvae feed on a wide variety of plants.

Butterflies and Moths of North America


Thursday, July 15, 2010

Fowler's Toad (Anaxyrus fowleri)

Fowler's Toad - Anaxyrus fowleri
(Formerly  Bufo fowleri)

Tentatively identified as a Fowler's Toad on Herps of Arkansas.

Description of Anaxyrus fowleri from the Savannah River Ecology Laboratory:

Fowler's toads are sometimes hard to identify because they have few distinctive characteristics. They have as few as one wart and as many as seven in each dorsal spot, and a ground color of light gray or brown, often with traces of yellow. Fowler's toads have a light stripe down the middle, and prominent cranial crests. These toads are known to hybridize with other toad species in some areas, making it difficult to be sure of a toad's species when attempting identification. Offspring may possess traits of both parental species.

Fowler's Toads range throughout most of the eastern United States.  (USGS range map)

This particular toad decided to live in my basement shop.  Mice long ago chewed an entrance hole through the weatherstripping on the basement door's bottom.  Toads, black snakes and copperheads have all also used this entrance.  I suppose they like laying on the basement's cool concrete slab on hot summer's days.  Jo and I have both learned that during the summer, it's best to push the basement door fully open and see what may be laying just inside the door before stepping into the basement.  Jo once had to convert a normal step into a jump mid-stride when a copperhead was visiting.

I moved the toad out of my basement several times.  I was concerned it wouldn't get enough to eat, though I reckon there are enough camel crickets and other insect also living in my basement for the toad to survive because it always returned.  I'm also concerned I might accidentally step on the toad  since it doesn't always remain hidden.  The toad doesn't seem to appreciate that danger.


Sunday, June 27, 2010

Laughing Gulls

Laughing Gulls on Pilings

No, I'm not in the Arkansas Ozarks at the moment.  Instead, I'm visiting my folks down on the Texas coast.  This shot was taken along the Lighthouse Point along the channel between Aransas Pass and Port Aransas.


Friday, May 21, 2010

Armadillo Herd

A litter of young armadillos foraging in our yard late Wednesday afternoon.

Armadillos have a unique reproductive scheme. Only one egg is fertilized. That egg divides and the resulting two eggs also divide once. Hence, a normal armadillo litter is always identical quadruplets.

Adult armadillos are solitary. After leaving their nest burrow, litter mates remain together for a relatively brief time before going their separate ways.

For more information on the Nine-banded Armadillo (Dasypus novemcinctus), please see:
The Mammals of Texas


Monday, May 17, 2010

Flower Fly: Toxomerus marginatus

Flower Flies: Toxomerus marginatus

(Photo: Marvin Smith on 5/14/10)

Range: Common throughout most of the United States and southern Canada.

Size: Small -- 5-6 mm (around a quarter of an inch).

Food: Adults feed on nectar and pollen and are often found visiting flowers of herbaceous plants or shrubs. Larvae are voracious predators of aphids, thrips, small caterpillars.

Key Identification Characteristics: Thin abdomen with a continuous yellow band around the outside edge. On similar species, the yellow and brown stripes across the abdomen go all the way to the abdomen's edge. Abdomen tip is pointed in females and rounded in males. Large reddish brown eyes.

(Source: BugGuide)


Saturday, May 15, 2010

Garden 2010: Cabbage

Our cabbage is starting to think about forming a head.

(Photo: Marvin Smith on 5/12/10)


Friday, May 14, 2010

Garden 2010: Green Beans

The green beans in our garden are looking good, but I need to get them mulched.

(Photo: Marvin Smith on 5/12/10)


Wednesday, May 05, 2010

It's Strawberry Season!


 Jo picked our first strawberries of the season and weeded our two strawberry beds. Later, she baited the electric fence with peanut butter. I installed the cages around our tomatoes and removed the grass from around the electric fence posts. It's time for us to convince -- try to convince -- the deer that our garden is not a good place to browse.


Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Johnny-Jump-Up (Field Pansy) - Viola bicolor

Johnny-Jump-Up (Field Pansy)
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 3/29/10)


Other Common Names: Field Pansy, Wild Pansy
My best shot at an ID: Viola bicolor (Pursh)
Plant family: Violaceae (Violet)
Habitat: Fields, waste ground, disturbed sites, meadows, roadsides, railroads, lawns (just about any open area)
Range: Throughout most of eastern and central North America and into western Canadian provinces
Plant Type: Native annual
Description (from Illinois Wildflowers): Each flower is about ½" across, consisting of 5 petals and 5 sepals. The petals are pale to medium blue-violet with dark purple lines, becoming white near the throat of the flower. However, the lowermost petal has a patch of yellow near its base. Also, the two lateral petals are bearded with white hairs near the throat of the flower.
Lore: Native Americans used Johnny-jump-up to treat colds, coughs, headaches and boils. It was also used to prepare a spring tonic.

Getting an ID on this little flower was more difficult than I expected, especially since I started out thinking that I knew what is was. It has three scientific name synonyms. Some sources attribute it's common name to a different plant. And, there is disagreement about whether V. bicolor is native or not. (The USDA says it is native.)

Johnny-Jump-Up spreads by seeds and is usually found in clusters. We have several patch in our yard and garden. Illinois Wildflowers says it is sometimes used as one of the parents of pansy cultivars developed for the mass market.

Text originally posted on March 29, 2008.


Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Yellow Troutlily (Erythronium rostratum)

Yellow Troutlily
(Photo:  Jo Smith on 3/24/10)

Yellow Troutlily
(Erythronium rostratum)

The Troutlily's common name is based on the speckled appearance of its leaves. It is also commonly known as Dog-toothed Violet though it is, indeed, a member of the lily family and not a violet. The bottom side of the plant's rhizomes vaguely resemble canine teeth. The most common form of Troutlily has only one leaf and does not bloom. Blooming forms have two leaves.

eFlora says E. rostratum is found in Mesic woods, often in flood plains and along waterways, also on shaded lower ledges of bluffs. It is the shaded lower ledges of bluffs that provide Troutlily habitat in our woods where it has just begun blooming this year.

Yellow Troutlily is much less widely distributed than it's long, red-anthered cousin Erythronium americanum. It is limited to the Ozark Mountains and a few other isolated pockets in the south-central United States. Unlike the other members of its genus, E. rostratum has erect rather than nodding flowers. (Please see US Wildflowers for photos and information on Erythronium americanum.)

eFlora distribution maps for E. rostratum and E. americanum.


Sunday, March 21, 2010

Daffodils on the First Full Day of Spring

Daffodils on the first full day of Spring in the "Sunny South, USA".


Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Arkansas Moth: Painted Lichen (Hypoprepia fucosa)

Painted Lichen (Hypoprepia fucosa)
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 6/2/09)

Painted Lichen Moth
(Hypoprepia fucosa)

Range: United States and southern Canada east of the Rockies.

Habitat: Wooded areas; adults are nocturnal and come to light.

Season: Adults fly from May to August in the north; perhaps most of the year in Florida.

Food: Larvae feed on lichen, algae, and moss on trees.

Life Cycle: overwinters as a larva.

Species information from BugGuide Species Page.

Other Links:

MPG Species Page
Moths of North Dakota
John Himmelman


Saturday, March 13, 2010

Fiery Searcher (Calosoma scrutator)

Photo taken 7/7/08
Fiery Searcher (Calosoma scrutator)
This brilliant, metallic green beetle is sometimes found in large numbers during the Arkansas spring, being attracted to lights at night. It may cause alarm because of its large size (it reaches 1 - 1½" in length) and the odor it emits to ward off predators and intruding humans. The wing covers have many fine longitudinal furrows that are beset with tiny punctures, and each cover has a reddish-copper border. The head, pronotum, and legs are deep metallic blue or purple, and the pronotum has a gold margin. Imprudent handlers could receive an unwelcome nip from the hefty mandibles. However, Calosoma scrutator is a highly beneficial species that climbs trees in search of caterpillar prey. Although the beetles are active from May to November, they seem to be especially numerous in May after trees are fully leaved out and while the spring flush of caterpillars is ravaging the foliage. Adults winter over, and they live up to 3 years. Eggs are placed one at a time in soil. Larvae also hunt caterpillars and climb trees and shrubs in search of prey. They pupate in earthen cells.


(Originally posted on 9/5/08)


Saturday, March 06, 2010

Arkansas Moth: Rosy Maple (Dryocampa rubicunda)

Rosy Maple Moth (Dryocampa rubicunda)
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 5/30/09)

Rosy Maple Moth
(Dryocampa rubicunda)

Were there a prize given for the most widespread, numerous and eye-catching moth, the Rosy Maple would probably win. Bob Patterson on MPG says this species has been the number one generator of ID requests, from southeastern Canada to Florida.

Hodges Number: 7715

Other common names: Green-striped Mapleworm (caterpillar)

Range: Eastern North America, including most of Florida.

Habitat: Deciduous forests.

Season: May-August in north (one brood), April-September in south (2-3 broods).

Food: Adults do not feed. Hostplants for larvae are maples, Acer, or oaks, Quercus.

Life cycle: Eggs are laid in clusters of 10-30 on foliage. Early instars are gregarious. Overwinters as pupa, below ground. Adults come to lights readily.

Caterpillars: Occasionally, D. rubicunda larvae can become serious defoliators. The caterpillar is usually most important as a pest on shade and ornamental landscape maples. Damage from loss of foliage is largely aesthetic; trees usually survive and recover, but some loss in growth and dieback in the crown may occur. (Please see Auburn University site for more information and photos.)

Species information from BugGuide.

Other links:
Moths of North America

Please visit Xenogere for the latest edition of The Moth and Me Blog Carnival, and check out Jason's fantastic images of a wingless female moth.


Thursday, March 04, 2010

Arkansas Moth: Angle-lined Prominent (Clostera inclusa)

Angle-lined Prominent Moth (Clostera inclusa)
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 3/30/09)

Angle-lined Prominent Moth 
(Clostera inclusa)

Other common name: Many-lined Angle, Poplar Tentmaker

Hodges: #7896

Range: Throughout eastern North America.

Season: March-September.

Food: Larvae feed on aspen, willows, poplars.

Species information from BugGuide.

Other information and photos:



Tuesday, March 02, 2010

Moth Identification

Four May Moths
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 5/30/09)

Can you find the moth that's a different species?

Three Juniper-twig Geometers (Patalene olyzonaria)

One Brown Scoopwing Moth (Calledapteryx dryopterata)


Monday, March 01, 2010

Arkansas Moth: Brown Scoopwing (Calledapteryx dryopterata)

Brown Scoopwing Moth (Calledapteryx dryopterata)
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 5/30/09)

Brown Scoopwing Moth
(Calledapteryx dryopterata)

Hodges Number: 7653

Size: Wingspan 18-22 mm (around 3/4 of an inch).

Identification: Adult: wings red-brown or orange-brown. Has a bat-like or cross-like configuration when perched. Forewing has large scoop in outer margin, distinguishing it from the Gray Scoopwing. (Gray Scoopwing (Callizzia amorata) is grayer and lacks large scoop in outer margin of forewing.)

Larva: has five pairs of prolegs, distinguishing it from a Geometrid larva, which has two pairs of prolegs.

Range: Eastern North America: Quebec and Ontario to Florida, west to Arkansas.

Habitat: Presumably woodlands, edges, with hostplants (Viburnum spp.)

Season: Adults May-August or September.

Remarks: BugGuide notes that C. dryopterata is uncommon. That may hold true for other parts of its range, but I'd say it is common in my area of the Arkansas Ozarks -- at least, it was in 2009. I photographed several Brown Scoopwing Moths throughout the summer.

Above species information from BugGuide.

Other links:

Lynn Scott's Lepidoptera
Moths of Maryland
Bob Patterson @ MPG


Thursday, February 25, 2010

Arkansas Moth: Horrid Zale (Zale horrida)

Horrid Zale Moth (Zale horrida)
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 5/6/09)

Horrid Zale Moth
(Zale horrida)

Hodges: 8717

Range: Eastern North America

Habitat: Deciduous forests.

Season: May - July

Host Plant: Larvae feed on Nanyberry--Viburnum lentago, and other (?) Viburnums. (Note: According to most sources -- like the USDA -- we live south of the native range of Nannyberry. However, we have other Viburnum species -- at least one, maybe more. Jo and I have never been able to pin down a species ID.)

Remarks: "Horrid" seem an inappropriate name for this beautiful moth. However, in Latin "horridus" (adjectival horrida) means "standing on end, sticking out, rough shaggy, bristly, prickly". Bristling or rough is also given as an archaic meaning for horrid in English.

If you check John Himmelman's lateral view of a Horrid Zale, you will see it has a patch of bristling chocolate colored scales right behind its head and elsewhere on its body. These are probably the bristles that lead to German entomologist Jacob Hubner naming this moth Zale horrida.

Species information from BugGuide.


Saturday, February 20, 2010

Arkansas Moth: Baltimore Bomolocha (Hypena baltimoralis)

 Baltimore Bomolocha (Hypena baltimoralis)
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 5/15/09)

Baltimore Bomolocha
(Hypena baltimoralis)


From BugGuide species page:

Identification: Adult: forewing grayish-brown, with whitish tint in female; tint often absent in male. Note blackish-brown apical dash, and large dark patch from base through median area which does not touch inner margin. Dark patch usually has white outer edging. Hindwing dark grayish-brown.

Range: Eastern North America: Nova Scotia to Florida, west to Arkansas, north to Wisconsin and Ontario.

Habitat: Deciduous forests or edges; adults are nocturnal and come to light.

Season: Adults fly from March to October in the south; May to September in the north. Caterpillar seen June to November.

Food: Larvae feed on maples, especially red maple (Acer rubrum).

Life cycle: Two generations per year in the north; two or more in the south.

Other sources and links:
Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center (caterpillar photo)
Lynn Scott's Lepidoptera Images
Bob Patterson's Images on MPG


Friday, February 19, 2010

Witch Hazel (Hamamelis vernalis)

Witch-Hazel (Hamamelis vernalis)
(Photo:  Jo Smith on 2/18/10)

Jo, I and the dogs took time out from our busy schedules for a long walk in the woods Thursday afternoon. Mainly, we just wanted to enjoy being outdoors in the sunshine, but we also wanted to see if the Witch Hazel down in the creek was still blooming. Our wildflower bloom hunger was satisfied, and despite the muddy sections, we enjoyed our time in the woods.

The text below originally appeared in a post published on January 24, 2008

The more common species of witch-hazel (Hamamelis virginiana) grows throughout eastern North America. It blooms in the late fall. Hamamelis vernalis is native to the Ozarks region. It blooms during the late winter and continues until early spring and is usually found in gravel or rocky stream beds or at the base of rocky slopes along streams. The flowers tend to be more reddish and have a spicy aroma.

Witch-hazel has many traditional uses. It was the wood of choice for "dowsing" -- finding underground water (or sometimes other valuable objects) using a Y-shaped branch. Extracts from the leaves, twigs, and bark were used to reduce inflammation, stop bleeding, and check secretions of the mucous membranes. Astringent skin care products made from American witch-hazel are still available from Dickinson's.

Although I will probably never be at the right place at the right time, I'd really like to witness witch-hazel seed dispersal. Over the next year after blooming, two shiny black seeds develop in a woody capsule. The capsules mature at about the time the following year's flowers open. Then, the capsules split so explosively that they eject the seeds up to twenty-five feet away from the mother plant.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Arkansas Moth: Fluid Arches Moth (Morrisonia latex)

Fluid Arches Moth (Morrisonia latex)
(Photo:  Marvin Smith on 05/14/09)

From BugGuide Species Page:

Identification: Forewing gray with dark patches along costa on either side of orbicular spot, black anal dash, and double black dash along outer margin below reniform spot; orbicular spot large, pale whitish, oblong, and extending obliquely to costa; reniform spot large, kidney-shaped, yellowish with and a dark central arc and blackish shading on lower (inner) side. Hindwing dirty grayish-yellow with darker veins and black-dashed terminal line

Range: Nova Scotia to South Carolina, west to Arkansas, north to Manitoba.

Season: Adults fly from May to July.

Food: Larvae feed on leaves of a variety of deciduous trees: alder, beech, birch, black cherry, elm, hop-hornbeam, maple, oak, willow.

More photos are also available at Moth Photographers Group.