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Diaphania costata (Diaphania costata)

Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Diaphania costata

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Image Credit: Arch Baker
Full-sized image of the Diaphania-Costata-Moth Thumbnail image of the Diaphania-Costata-Moth
Image Credit: Daphne R.H. taken in Gruene, TX
Full-sized image #2 of the Diaphania-Costata-Moth Thumbnail image #2 of the Diaphania-Costata-Moth

The smooth, satiny wings of Diaphania costata are edged in a golden hem that gleams in the light.

Updated: 01/03/2022; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
A virtual twin for Kimball's Palpita Moth, Diaphania costata is also a member of the Snout-nose Moth family, Crambidae. The elongated nose has an orange burnish, sitting directly between two large round eyes that rest on either side of the narrow, white head. White forewings have a soft sheen and are thin enough to almost see through. They lack marks and patterns save for the thick, rounded gold front edge. This metallic line stretches from the body to the tip of the wings. The abdomen is completely white with the same satiny luster and a clean white fringe borders the bottom edges of all wings. White legs have orange color at the 'knee' joint and may or may not have orange bands on the feet.

The larvae feed on plants like bluestar, star jasmine, and vinca, often ruining their ornamental appearance. Though Diaphania costata has made a home in the Deep South and surrounding states, this species is originally from more subtropical, southern countries. It seems to share a range similar to its look-a-like, Kimball's Palpita.©InsectIdentification.org

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General Characteristics

Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
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Shiny insect icon

Taxonomic Hierarchy

Species Breakdown
Kingdom: Animalia
  Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Insecta
      Order: Lepidoptera
        Family: Crambidae
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          Genus: Diaphania
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            Species: costata

Identifying Information

Size, Colors, Features
Scientific Name: Diaphania costata
Other Name(s): White Palpita Moth
Category: Butterfly or Moth
Size (Adult; Length): 20mm to 30mm (0.78" to 1.18")
Colorwheel Graphic Colors: white; gold; orange
Descriptors: satin; glossy; shiny; translucent; transparent; palpita; orange feet; golden edge; snout; nose; flying

Relative Size Comparison

Typical Size Between 20mm (0.8in) and 30mm (1.2in)
Lo: 20mm
Md: 25mm
Hi: 30mm

Territorial Map*

U.S., Canada, and Mexico
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Prince Edward Is.  
* MAP NOTES: The territorial heat map above showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Diaphania costata may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data is useful when attempting to see concentrations of particular species across the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some insects are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America. States/Territories shown above are a general indicator of areas inhabited by the Diaphania costata. Insects generally go where they please, typically driven by diet, environmental changes, and / or mating habits.

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