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Glover's Silkmoth (Hyalophora columbia gloveri)

Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Glover's Silkmoth

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Image Credit: Arthur P., taken in Colstrip, MT
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The large Glover's Silkmoth is considered by many to be a subspecies of the equally large and physically similar Columbia Silkmoth, though others see it as a stand-alone moth.

Updated: 01/03/2022; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
Classification of moths and other insects can sometimes change, and it is possible that this one will, but the Glover's Silkmoth is generally considered a subspecies that resides in the western states and provinces and as well as some central provinces. The Columbia Silkmoth is found in the Northeast and Great Lakes area, so the moth's location is really helpful in trying to determine its identity.

Glover's Silkmoth is a rich brown color with a white line crossing the lower part of the wings. Beneath the white line is a band of gray-brown and a tan border. A thin curvy line undulates in the tan area, creating 'u' shapes. At the wing tips, a white squiggly line looks almost pearlescent on a pink background, and a dark blue and black eyespot is next to it. A large white crescent sits on each hindwing and is visible when they are spread open and flat. Smaller white dashes sit in the center of the brown parts of the forewings. The moth has a hairy, gray collar by the head. Its hairy thorax is the same shade of brown as the wings, and a large white patch is near the head. Antennae are large and thick with comb-like teeth. Legs are brown and also thick with hair.

Caterpillars are green or yellow. Depending on its maturity, it may be yellow and black with tufts of black spikes in rows on the body, or is could be green and covered in white, yellow, and blue knobby bumps. It feeds on an assortment of plants like buffalo berry, Russian olive, willow, larch, bitter brush, chokecherry, and wild roses. One brood is produced each year, but two may be possible in Mexico and Arizona. Look for adults in late spring through midsummer in woodlands, backyard gardens, and areas with wet soil.©InsectIdentification.org

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General Characteristics

Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
Flying insect icon
Patterned insect icon
Rounded insect body icon

Taxonomic Hierarchy

Species Breakdown
Kingdom: Animalia
  Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Insecta
      Order: Lepidoptera
        Family: Saturniidae
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          Genus: Hyalophora
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            Species: columbia gloveri

Identifying Information

Size, Colors, Features
Scientific Name: Hyalophora columbia gloveri
Category: Butterfly or Moth
Size (Adult; Length): 80mm to 100mm (3.14" to 3.93")
Colorwheel Graphic Colors: brown; white; gray; tan; ivory
Descriptors: huge; large; rounded; brown; white marks; white squiggle; eyespot wing tip; flying

Relative Size Comparison

Typical Size Between 80mm (3.1in) and 100mm (3.9in)
Lo: 80mm
Md: 90mm
Hi: 100mm

Territorial Map*

U.S., Canada, and Mexico
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Territory map graphic of the country of 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 Glover's Silkmoth 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 Glover's Silkmoth. Insects generally go where they please, typically driven by diet, environmental changes, and / or mating habits.
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