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  • Ailanthus Webworm Moth - (Atteva punctella)

    Ailanthus Webworm Moth - (Atteva punctella)

    The skinny, orange Ailanthus Webworm Moth looks more like a flower beetle thanks to its colorful pattern, tightly closed wings, and appreciation for the flowers of its namesake.

    Staff Writer (8/25/2017): The definitive coloring and stripes on this moth make it unique among Webworm Moths. Bright orange wings are spotted with clusters of white dots ringed in black. They tuck and roll their wings close to their bodies when resting, as opposed to spreading them out or letting them lay flat against themselves. They are very thin as well, so they might look more like a flower beetle than a moth.

    They are members of the Ermine moth family. Once a female lays her eggs in her old cocoon (for protection), she dies. Only one generation of moths lives every year. The eggs overwinter in their case and emerge as caterpillars in the spring. Larvae create and share a web on leaves and branches of the Ailanthus tree, also called Tree of Heaven. Though the moth is named after one type of tree, a variety of plants and shrubs are food for the caterpillar. Other host trees come from the Simarouba genus. The webs these caterpillars make are unattractive to some and therefore this species can be a pest, especially in plant nurseries.

    Adults are active in the daytime and can be seen from spring through autumn. They are considered good pollinators.

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    Details of the:
    Ailanthus Webworm Moth

    Category: Butterfly or Moth
    Common name: Ailanthus Webworm Moth
    Scientific Name: Atteva punctella

      Kingdom: Animalia
       Phylum: Arthropoda
        Class: Insecta
         Order: Lepidoptera
          Family: Yponomeutidae
           Genus: Atteva
            Species: punctella

    Size (Adult, Length): 18mm to 30mm (0.71in to 1.18in)

    Identifying Colors: orange; white; black

    Additional Descriptors: orange; white; black; long, 6, six, legs, antennae; wings; flying

    North American Reach (Though Not Limited To*): Alabama; Arkansas; Connecticut; Delaware; Florida; Georgia; Illinois; Indiana; Iowa; Kansas; Kentucky; Louisiana; Maine; Maryland; Massachusetts; Michigan; Minnesota; Mississippi; Missouri; Nebraska; New Hampshire; New Jersey; New York; North Carolina; North Dakota; Ohio; Oklahoma; Pennsylvania; Rhode Island; South Carolina; South Dakota; Tennessee; Texas;Vermont; Virginia; West Virginia; Wisconsin

    * Keep in mind that an insect's reach is not limited by lines on a map and therefore may appear in areas/regions/states beyond those listed above.

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