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Raspberry Pyrausta (Pyrausta signatalis)

Detailing the physical features, habits, territorial reach and other identifying qualities of the Raspberry Pyrausta

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Image Credit: Aaron K., taken in Orange, MA
Full-sized image of the Raspberry-Pyrausta-Moth Thumbnail image of the Raspberry-Pyrausta-Moth

This small moth's colors are bright and refreshing, like pink lemonade on a hot summer day.

Updated: 07/09/2021; Authored By Staff Writer; Content ©www.InsectIdentification.org
The Raspberry Pyrausta is part of the Crambidae family, so it has what appears to be a snout on its face. This 'nose' is actually a pair of hairy labial palps that are held closely together, and they help the moth sense what is edible. The wings are typically flat when it is resting. It is a noticeable shade of pink, almost fuchsia. Two yellow or cream-colored lines cross the forewings: one near the head, the other near the bottom. Both of these lines are wavy and squiggly. The lower line also has a dip in the middle of the wing. The head and thorax of the Raspberry Pyrausta are yellow or brown, and this lighter color melds into the rest of the pink wing. A wide fringe at the bottom edge of the wings is yellowish brown. Big, round eyes sit on the sides of the head. Adults are common across the continent.

Caterpillars for this species feed on horsemint, a type of beebalm that grows in meadows and fields. It is an attractive flower for pollinators, offering nectar to bees and butterflies. This caterpillar is bright pink, like its adult form, with yellow near the head. As it matures, the pink color wears down leaving the larva a creamy yellow with fine, pale yellow lines running down its 'back'.

General Characteristics
Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
Flying insect icon
Striped or banded insect icon


Taxonomic Hierarchy
Species Breakdown
Kingdom: Animalia
  Phylum: Arthropoda
    Class: Insecta
      Order: Lepidoptera
        Family: Crambidae
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          Genus: Pyrausta
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            Species: signatalis
Identifying Information
Size, Colors, Features
Scientific Name: Pyrausta signatalis
Category: Butterfly or Moth
Size (Adult; Length): 8mm to 11mm (0.31" to 0.43")
Colorwheel Graphic Colors: pink; yellow; brown; ivory
Descriptors: pink; fuchsia; yellow; squiggle lines; wavy; small; dip; flying

Relative Size Comparison
Typical Size Between 8mm (0.3in) and 11mm (0.4in)
Lo: 8mm
Md: 9.5mm
Hi: 11mm
Territorial Map*
U.S., Canada, and Mexico
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Territory map graphic of the country of Mexico
Contiguous United States shape map layer graphic
Prince Edward Is.  
* MAP NOTES: The territorial heat map above showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Raspberry Pyrausta 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 Raspberry Pyrausta. Insects generally go where they please, typically driven by diet, environmental changes, and / or mating habits.


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