Crambid Snout Moths vary in appearance, but Herpetogramma sphingealis goes a step further with a different look for each gender.
Male Herpetogramma sphingealis moths are shaped somewhat like Sphinx moths having slightly elongated wings. Females have wings that are more square-shaped. Both are a shade of brown, but females generally have a paler, faded hue. A shimmering luster, or sheen, covers both sexes giving the wings a glassy look. A pale spot at the outer edge of each forewing may be roughly bordered in dark brown. This species does not have clear lines crossing the body like similar-looking relatives. The hindwings have white fringe near the body and its forewings have a spot of white on their mostly brown fringe. The ventral (belly) side of the moth is white.
Caterpillars of this species of Crambid Snout Moth eat the fronds of Christmas ferns, a native North American fern found throughout the continent. Adults are on wing from May through early autumn. Look for them in dark, shady areas of forests.
Scientific Name: Herpetogramma sphingealis
Butterfly or Moth
Size (Adult; Length): 31mm to 37mm (1.21in to 1.44in)
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.
Butterfly and Moth Anatomy
Antennae: Butterflies and Moths have a pair of antennae on the head used as sensors.
Head: The head is home to the insect's eyes, antennae, and proboscis.
Thorax: Home to the three pairs of legs as well as vital internal organs.
Abdomen: Contains vital internal organs such as the heart(s) and reproduction facilities.
Forewing: The upper, forward wing pair used for flying.
Hindwing: The lower, rearward wing pair used for flying.
NOTE: Butterflies and Moths are part of the Lepidopteran order as they share many similarities.