It is hard to find any yellow on the Yellow-haired Dagger. Perhaps for this reason, it is becoming more commonly known as the Powdered Dagger. The moth is generally a peppered gray color with a black ring on each wing. Jagged lines cross the lower part of the wings in black and white, like a zigzag. The gray thorax and upper legs are hairy. The lower legs have white and dark bands. Look for them in deciduous forests or near trees. The cryptic coloring of the moth may allow it to blend in with lichen-covered tree trunks.
Caterpillars have some variability in color. Most that are spotted are generally black and covered in spiky yellow-orange hairs that grow out of pale bumps around each segment. Dense clumps, or tufts, of orange hairs by the head resemble the kind seen in Tussock moth caterpillars. The rear end has two clusters of long hairs. Some caterpillars may have white bodies, and other caterpillars may be black and white with a scarlet red side stripe. Others are rust-colored or completely black and white. All are covered in spiky hairs that do not seem to hurt skin. The caterpillar feeds on the leaves of ash, alder, elm, maple, hickory, and walnut. Two broods can be produced each year.
General Characteristics Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
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.
Territorial Map U.S., Canada, and Mexico
Prince Edward Is.
Butterfly and Moth Anatomy
Antennae: Butterflies and Moths have a pair of antennae on the head used for sensing.
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.