Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Happy Pollinator Week: June 21-27, 2021! Butterflies and moths are pollinators of many flowering plants.

Did you know? The Hummingbird Clearwing (Hemaris thysbe) hovers in flight and uses its long tongue to sip nectar from flowers.

Wanton Pinion
Lithophane petulca (Grote, 1874)

Family: Noctuidae
Subfamily: Noctuinae
Identification: Forewing grayish brown with violet to gray shading along basal half of costa. Two forms--in shaded form, lower 2/3 of forewing is darker brown with pale tan along costa; orbicular and reniform spots also pale tan. Unshaded form has reddish brown in median and terminal areas, with a faint dark brown median bar. Am. and median lines zigzagged; pm. line a series of tiny black dots. Hindwing dark grayish brown with pale fringe in both forms.
Wing Span: 3.5-4.2 cm.
Life History:
Flight: September to November, February to May.
Caterpillar Hosts: Birches and other trees.
Adult Food:
Range: Nova Scotia and New Jersey Pine Barrens; west across Canada, south to southern Ohio, Wisconsin, and Minnesota.
Management Needs:
Comments: NULL