Harnessed Tiger Moth (Apantesis phalerata)
Detailing the identifying qualities of the Harnessed Tiger Moth, including physical features and territorial reach.
Updated: 9/14/2017; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
The Harnessed Tiger Moth could be mistaken for a butterfly with its stripes, contrasting colors and splashes of orange underneath.
The Harnessed Tiger Moth is one of a group of very similar looking Tiger Moths. This family is known for its showy colors. For the Harnessed Tiger Moth, the biggest color statement comes from its hingwings where a flourish of orange-pink can only be seen with wings spread. The abdomen is black with reddish sides. This moth can been seen flying from early spring to late autumn in the southern states. The colder northern climate reduces that by two months.
Caterpillars are completely covered in hairs that look like bristles of a brush. Its body is a grayish black and the hairs are yellowish. A thin yellow or orange-colored stripe extends from head to rear. They eat the leaves of clover, plantains, corn and dandelion.