Erebidae

Pronunciation:  [Eh·REB·i·dee]

Common Name:  Underwings, tiger moths, tussock moths, ctenuchid moths, and others

Description:   This is an extremely diverse family of moths that is currently divided into 16 subfamilies.   The more distinctive groups include:

  • Arctiinae (tiger moths, wasp moths, and ctenuchids).   Often vivid and contrasting in color.   Tiger moths are nocturnal but wasp moths and ctenuchids are often diurnal.  Larvae are “woolly bears”.
  • Erebinae (underwings).   Front wings mottled brown or gray cover hind wings marked with concentric bands of contrasting color.
  • Lymantriinae (tussock moths).   Adults are typically camouflaged with brown or gray wings.   Larvae bear conspicuous tufts of long hairs.
  • Hypeninae (snout moths).  Adults are typically triangular in shape and have long palps resembling a snout.

Spot ID Key Characters:

  1. Quadrifid venation in both front and hind wings

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Order:  Lepidoptera