Moths of the North Coast & Cascades

Moths are insects and members of the taxonomic order of Lepidoptera. They and their larvae provide food for other insects, fish, and animals, and they are pollinators for many nocturnally flowering plants. Most moths are active at night and pale in color, but those that are active in the day are brightly colored and may look like a butterfly. You can distinguish moths from butterflies by examining their antennae - butterflies have thin and antennae with a knob on the end; moths do not have a knob and are often feathery. Over the last five years, parks in the North Coast and Cascades Network have conducted Bioblitzes to begin developing species lists of moths in our parks. For more information you can also go to: http://pnwmoths.biol.wwu.edu/.

Miller Moths (Cossidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Acossus populi Aspen carpenterworm Poplar, esp. quaking aspen x

Hook-tip Moths (Drepanidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Drepana arcuata Arched hooktip Alders x
Drepana bilineata Two-lined hooktip Alders, birch, poplar x
Habrosyne scripta Lettered Habrosyne Birches, raspberry (Rubus) x
Pseudothyatira cymatophoroides Tufted Thyatirin Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Choristoneura rosaceana Oblique-banded leafroller Many shrubs and trees x
Moth with intricate patterns on its upper wings
Lettered habrosyne, or scribe, moth (Habrosyne scripta)

NPS / D.L. Strenge

Underwings, Litter Moths, Tiger Moths, Tussock Moths, etc. (Erebidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Arctia caja Great tiger moth Many different plants x
Clemensia albata Little white lichen moth Tree lichens and algae x
Lophocampa argentata Silver-spotted tiger moth Douglas-fir and other conifers, some other plants x x
Lophocampa maculata Spotted tussock moth Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x x
Platarctia parthenos St. Lawrence tiger moth Alder, aspen, birch, willow x
Platyprepia virginalis Ranchman's tiger moth Many herbs x
Pyrrharctia isabella Banded woolly-bear (L); Isabella tiger moth (A) Many herbs and trees x x
Tyria jacobaeae* Cinnabar moth Tansy ragwort (Senecio jacobaea) and other native Senecio x
Drasteria sabulosa Willows x
Zale lunata Lunate zale Many shrubs, including Rubus, and some herbs x
Zanclognatha jacchusalis Wavy-lined Zanclognatha Dead leaves x
Hypena palparia Mottled Hypena Broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Dasychira grisefacta Grizzled tussock moth Conifers (Pinaceae) x
* = non-native
Moth specimen with white spots against brown on its upper wings
Silver-spotted tiger moth (Lophocampa argentata)

NPS / D.L. Strenge

Geometer Moths (Geometridae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Archiearis infans The infant Birches (Betula) x
Biston betularia Pepper and salt geometer Many shrubs and trees, some herbs x
Cabera erythemaria Yellow-dusted cream Willow, birch, poplar, blueberry (Vaccinium) x
Campaea perlata Pale beauty Many different shrubs and trees x x
Caripeta divisata Gray spruce looper Conifers (Pinaceae) x
Ennomos magnaria Maple spanworm Many deciduous shrbus and trees x
Enypia packardata Packard's girdle Many conifers x
Enypia venata Variable girdle Several conifers x
Euchlaena johnsonaria Johnson's Euchlaena Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Euchlaena trigrinaria Mottled Euchlaena Poplar, birch, and many other shrubs and trees x
Hypagyrtis unipunctata One-spotted variant Many shrubs and trees x
Iridopsis emasculatum Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x x
Macaria notata Birch angle Birch and alder x
Macaria signaria Pale-marked angle Many coniferous trees x
Melanolophia imitata Western carpet Many coniferous trees x
Nematocampa resistaria Horned spanworm Broadleaved and coniferous shrubs and trees x
Neoalcis californiaria Brown-lined looper Douglas-fir and other conifers; broadleaved trees and shrubs x
Nepytia phantasmaria Phantom hemlock looper Western hemlock, Douglas-fir, and other conifers x
Pero mizon Many broadleaved shrubs and trees, also conifers x x
Pero morrisonaria Morrison's Pero Conifers (Pinaceae) as well as broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Pero occidentalis Western Pero Conifers (Pinaceae) as well as broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Plagodis phlogosaria Straight-lined Plagodis Broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Prochoerodes forficaria x
Protoboarmia percelaria Porcelain gray Conifers (Pinaceae) as well as broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Sabulodes aegrotata Omnivorous looper Many herbs and trees x
Selenia alciphearia Northern Selenia Broadleaved shrubs and trees, including willow and alder x
Speranza lorquinaria Lorquin's angle Broadleaved shrubs (alder, willow) and trees, and some conifers x
Speranza plumosata Maple x
Tetracis jubararia October thorn Many broadleaved shrubs x
Antepirrhoe fasciata Plants including fireweed and huckleberry x
Anticlea vasiliata Variable carpet Raspberry (Rubus), rose (Rosa) x
Ceratodalia gueneata x
Coryphista meadii Barberry geometer Barberry (Berberis) x
Dysstroma citrata Dark marbled carpet Alder, willow, raspberries (Rubus), and other plants x
Dysstroma sobria 10-spotted Rhododendron moth Rhododendron, Salal x
Dysstroma truncata Marbled carpet Shrubs such as alders, willows, and also herbs x
Enchoria lacteata x
Epirrhoe alternata White-banded toothed carpet Bedstraw (Galium) x
Epirrhoe plebeculata Bedstraw (Galium) x
Epirrita autumnata Autumnal moth Many conifers and alder, willow, birch, poplar x
Eulithis xylina Northwestern phoenix moth Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Euphyia intermediata Sharp-angled carpet Many herbs and some trees x
Eupithecia cretaceata False hellebore (Veratrum viride) x
Eupithecia graefii Graef's pug Heath family (Ericaceae) x
Eupithecia longipalpata Firs, spruces, hemlocks x
Eupithecia tripunctaria White-spotted pug Parsley family (Apiaceae) x
Hydriomena furcata July highflyer moth Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Hydriomena marinata Conifers (Pinaceae) x
Hydriomena renunciata Renounced Hydriomena x
Hydriomena speciosata Conifers (Pinaceae) x
Mesoleuca gratulata Western white-ribboned carpet Hazelnut (Corylus cornuta) and Rubus x
Operophtera bruceata Bruce spanworm Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Perizoma costiguttata Oceanspray (Holodiscus discolor) x
Perizoma grandis x
Plemyria georgii George's carpet moth Alder, willow, birch x
Stamnodes blackmorei x
Triphosa haesitata Tissue moth Buckthorn (Rhamnus) x x
Venusia cambrica Welsh wave Various shrubs and trees including willow and alder x
Xanthorhoe defensaria Possibly Rubus? x
Cyclophora pendulinaria Sweetfern geometer Various shrubs, trees, and herbs x
Idaea dimidiata* Single-dotted wave Many herbs x
Scopula junctaria Simple wave Many plants x
* = non-native
Moth with dark brown and lighter brown marbling on its upper wings
Dark marbled carpet (Dysstroma citrata) moth

NPS / D.L. Strenge

Eggars (Lasiocampidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Malacosoma californicum Western tent caterpillar Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x x
Malacosoma disstria Forest tent caterpillar Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Phyllodesma americana Lappet moth Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x x

Owlet Moths (Noctuidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Acronicta dactylina Fingered dagger Alder, willow, cottonwood, birch, poplar x
Acronicta fragilis Fragile dagger Many shrubs and trees x
Acronicta impleta Yellow-haired dagger Broadleaved shrubs and trees including willow, maple, oak x
Acronicta impressa Impressed dagger moth Many shrubs and trees, some herbs x
Acronicta innotata Unmarked dagger Broadleaved shrubs and trees including willow, alder, poplar x
Acronicta vulpina Miller dagger Aspen, birch poplar, willow, alder x
Alypia langtoni Langston's forester Willow-herbs (Chamerion) x
Amphipyra pyramidoides Copper underwing Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Bleptina caradrinalis Bent-winged owlet Dead deciduous leaves; various live herb and tree leaves x
Agrotis vancouverensis herbs and grasses x
Anaplectoides prasina* Green arches Many broadleaved plants x
Anaplectoides pressus Dappled dart Many broadleaved plants x
Apamaea cogitata Thoughtful Apamea Grasses x
Apamea amputatrix Yellow-headed cutworm Pest of many crops and young fruit trees x
Aseptis adnixa Indian Plum (Oemleria cerasiformis) x
Aseptis binotata Rusty shoulder knot moth Many shrubs x
Caradrina morpheus* Mottled rustic herbs including dandelion (Taraxacum) and nettle (Urtica) x
Diarsia esurialis Many plants including alder, hazelnut, and ferns x
Euplexia benesimilis American angle shades Many plants including ferns and shrubs x
Euxoa quebecensis Unknown; probably herbs x
Homorthodes communis Alder quaker Alder x
Homorthodes furfurata Northern scurfy quaker Broadleaved shrubs and trees including maples and cherries x
Homorthodes hanhami Unknown, probably broadleaved trees x
Hyppa brunneicrista Many plants including fireweed (Chamerion) and alder x
Hyppa contrasta Blueberry (Vaccinium) and other plants x
Lacanobia subjuncta Speckled cutworm Many broadleaved shrubs and trees, including Vaccinium, willow, alder x
Lacinipolia comis herbs including legumes (Fabaceae) and Asteraceae x
Lateroligia ophiogramma* Double lobed moth Grasses x
Leucania farcta Meadow wainscot moth Grasses x
Melanchra adjuncta Hitched arches herbs and some shrubs and trees. x
Mythimna oxygala Lesser wainscot Grasses, sedges, asters x
Noctua pronuba Large yellow underwing Many herbs and grasses x
Ochropleura implecta Flame-shouldered dart herbs (including legumes, asters) and also willow x
Phlogophora periculosa Brown angle shades Many plants including herbs, broadleaved shrubs and trees, conifers x
Polia nimbosa Stormy arches Broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Polia piniae Piney moth Broadleaved shrubs including willow and alder x
Pseudorthodes irrorata Many broadleaved shrubs x
Sideridis maryx Maroonwing Unknown; possibly kinnikinnick (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi) x
Spirameter lutra Otter spirameter Many broadleaved shrubs and trees, and conifers x
Panthea virginarius Douglas-fir and Ponderosa pine x
Autographa ampla Large looper moth Various shrubs and trees including willow and poplar x
Autographa californica Alfalfa looper Many herbs, especially legumes x
Syngrapha celsa Western conifer looper Many conifer species (Pinaceae) x
* = non-native
Hairy white and black moth specimen
Miller dagger (Acronicta vulpina) moth

NPS / D.L. Strenge

Prominents (Notodontidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Oligocentria pallida Pale prominent Poplar, willow, maple, apple x
Furcula scolopendrina Zigzag furcula moth Poplar, willow x
Pheosia rimosa Black-rimmed prominent Willows, aspen, poplars x
Schizura ipomoeae Morning-glory prominent Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Schizura unicornis Unicorn caterpillar moth Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Nadata gibbosa White-dotted prominent Oaks and other trees and shrubs x x
Clostera albosigma Sigmoid prominent Poplar, willow, aspen, willow x

Grass Moths (Pyralidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Herpetogramma pertextalis Bold-feathered grass moth Many herbs and shrubs x

Saturniids (Saturniidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Hemileuca eglanterina Elegant sheepmoth Woody plants including wild lilac (Ceanothus), snowberry (Symphiocarpus), and cherry (Prunus) x
Hylaphora gloveri Glover's silkmoth Many broadleaved shrubs and trees x
Purple, orange, and black moth in the grass
Male elegant sheep moth (Hemileuca eglanterina at San Juan Island National Historical Park

NPS / Michelle Toshack

Sphinx Moths (Sphingidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Haemeris diffinis Snowberry clearwing Many plants including snowberry (Symphiocarpus), honeysuckle (Lonicera), dogbane (Apocynum), and cherry (Prunus) x
Smerinthus cerisyi One-eyed sphinx Poplar, willow, other broadleaved trees x

Tortricid Moths (Tortricidae)

Species Common name Larval host plants Lewis and Clark National Historical Park North Cascades National Park Complex Olympic National Park San Juan Island National Historical Park
Choristoneura rosaceana Oblique-banded leafroller Many shrubs and trees x

Last updated: July 5, 2018