Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Orange-tipped oakworm moth
Anisota senatoria (J.E. Smith, 1797)


Family: Saturniidae
Subfamily: Ceratocampinae
Identification: Females can be twice as large as males. Upperside of female is yellow-orange to yellow-brown; forewing has a white cell spot and varying amounts of scattered black specks. Upperside of male is reddish orange to brownish orange; forewing is narrow with a small white cell spot and a small whitish translucent patch.
Wing Span: 1 3/16 - 2 inches (3 - 5 cm).
Life History: Adults are day fliers. Mating takes place from late morning to early afternoon, and in late afternoon or dusk, females begin laying eggs in large clumps on the underside of oak leaves. Eggs hatch in about 2 weeks and are gregarious when young. Fully-grown caterpillars pupate and overwinter in shallow underground chambers.
Flight: One brood from June-July.
Caterpillar Hosts: Various oaks (Quercus) and perhaps chinquapin (Castanea pumila).
Adult Food: Adults do not feed.
Habitat: Deciduous forests.
Range: Southern Maine west across the Great Lakes region to central Minnesota; south to central Georgia, central Alabama, central Mississippi, Louisiana, and east Texas.
Conservation: Caterpillar populations can be large enough to cause severe defoliation of oaks.
NCGR: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: None reported.
Comments: NULL