dark-spotted palthis

(Palthis angulalis)

dark-spotted palthis
Photo by Alfredo Colon
  Hodges #

8397

 
 
Conservation Status
  IUCN Red List

not listed

     
  NatureServe

N5 - Secure

SNR - Unranked

     
  Minnesota

not listed

     
           
 
Description
 
 

Dark-spotted palthis is a medium-sized litter moth. It occurs across the United States and southern Canada, and in Mexico. It is common in Minnesota. Adults are found from May through August in deciduous and mixed forests. Larvae feed on both living and dead leaves of deciduous and coniferous shrubs and trees, including alder, ash, basswood, birch, willow, pine, and spruce; and of forbs, including aster and goldenrod.

Adults are roughly triangular in shape, are 1116 (18 mm) in length, and have a ¾ to 1 (20 to 26 mm) wingspan.

The forewings are long and strongly angled on the outer margin, making the outer third distinctly longer than the inner third. They are light tan and are crossed with dark lines and bands. From the wing base to the tip there is an antemedial (AM) line, a median band, a postmedial (PM) line, a subterminal (ST) line, and a terminal line. The AM line is is narrow and jagged. The median band is broad, oblique, and usually dark brown, sometimes orangish-brown. It strongly curves up near the inner margin. It does not reach either the AM line or the leading (costal) margin. The PM and ST lines are jagged. The ST line is often incomplete and sometimes inconspicuous. The terminal line is thin. There is a kidney-shaped spot (reniform spot) above the PM line near the outer (costal) margin. The reniform spot is crescent-shaped, slanting, and dark brown. It is solid, sometimes with an orangish-brown center, but not interrupted with a white line. There is no round spot (orbicular spot) in the median area. At the wing tip (apex) on the costal margin there is a rusty-brown outer patch and a yellow inner patch.

On the male, the finger-like sensory organs (palps) attached to the mouth are very long, densely hairy, projected forward, and turned upward at the tip.

The caterpillar is mottled brown and small, up to ¾ (2 cm) in length. It is densely covered with minute white spines. There is a low hump on the first abdominal segment (A1) and an angled hump on A8. On A7 there is an oblique white line that continues up the hump on A8, sometimes changing to black on A8. There is a similar but less conspicuous line on A1, A2, and A3 that continue onto A2, A3, and A4 respectively. Mature caterpillars are found from June through fall.

 
     
 

Size

 
 

Total Length: 1116 (18 mm)

Wingspan: ¾ to 1 (20 to 26 mm)

 
     
 

Similar Species

 
     
     
 
Habitat
 
 

Deciduous and mixed forests and woodlands

 
     
 
Biology
 
 

Season

 
 

Two generations per year: May through August

 
     
 

Behavior

 
 

 

 
     
 

Life Cycle

 
 

 

 
     
 

Larva Hosts

 
 

Living and dead leaves of deciduous and coniferous shrubs and trees, including alder, ash, basswood, birch, willow, pine, and spruce; and of forbs including aster and goldenrod.

 
     
 

Adult Food

 
 

 

 
     
 
Distribution
 
 

Distribution Map

 

Sources

21, 24, 29, 30, 71, 72, 75, 82.

 
  12/16/2020      
         
 

Occurrence

 
 

Common in Minnesota

 
         
 
Taxonomy
 
 

Order

Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths)  
 

Suborder

Glossata  
 

Infraorder

Neolepidoptera  
  Parvorder Heteroneura  
  No Rank Ditrysia  
  No Rank Obtectomera  
 

Superfamily

Noctuoidea (noctuid moths)  
 

Family

Erebidae  
 

Subfamily

Herminiinae (litter moths)  
 

Genus

Palthis  
       
 

This genus and species was formerly included in the family Arctiidae. A molecular phylogenetic study on the noctuid moths (Superfamily Noctuidea) published in 2005 clarified the relationships of the noctuid moths and resulted in a reshuffling of the families and subfamilies. The current classification places this genus and species in the family Erebidae.

 
       
 

Synonyms

 
 

 

 
       
 

Common Names

 
 

dark-spotted palthis

 
       

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Glossary

Antemedial (AM) line

A thin line separating the basal area and the median area of the forewing of Lepidoptera.

 

Costal margin

The leading edge of the forewing of insects.

 

Orbicular spot

A circular spot or outline in the outer median area on the forewing of many moths.

 

Postmedial (PM) line

A thin line separating the median area and the postmedial area of the forewing of Lepidoptera.

 

Reniform spot

A kidney-shaped spot or outline in the outer median area on the forewing of many moths.

 

 

 

 

 

       
Visitor Photos
   

Share your photo of this moth.

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Attach one or more photos and, if you like, a caption.

       
Alfredo Colon
       
  dark-spotted palthis    
       
MinnesotaSeasons.com Photos
   
       
       
       

 

Camera

     
Slideshows
   
  Palthis
Bill Keim
 
  Palthis  
 
About

Family: Erebidae
Subfamily: Herminiinae
Genus: Palthis

- Palthis (palthis moth)
- Palthis angulalis (Dark-spotted Palthis Moth)
- Palthis asopialis (Faint-spotted Palthis Moth)

 
     

 

slideshow

       
Visitor Videos
   

Share your video of this moth.

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Attach a video, a YouTube link, or a cloud storage link.

       
       
       
Other Videos
 
  Palthis angulalis
wetvideocamera
 
   
 
About

Jul 7, 2014

The Dark-spotted Palthis Moth. Seen high on a wall and videoed with a monopod. Burnaby, BC July 7, 2014

   
       

 

Camcorder

         
Visitor Sightings
   

Report a sighting of this moth.

This button not working for you?
Simply email us at info@MinnesotaSeasons.com.
Be sure to include a location.

Alfredo Colon
8/19/2019

Location: Woodbury, MN

dark-spotted palthis


 
         
MinnesotaSeasons.com Sightings
         

 

 

 

Binoculars


Created: 12/16/2020

Last Updated:

About Us | Privacy Policy | Contact Us | © 2021 MinnesotaSeasons.com. All rights reserved.