VA.PHC

Plant Health Care in Richmond, VA

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What's Bugging You?

By Arthur V. Evans

During a recent warm spell on the heels of New Year’s Day, a small collection of somberly hued moths gathered at my front porch light. I posted a picture of one of these moths on my entomology page on Facebook, and it was immediately identified as the fall cankerworm, Alsophilapometaria (Harris), a moth in the family Geometridae. The caterpillars of geometrids are collectively called inchworms. Adult fall cankerworms present a striking example of sexual dimorphism. Males are fully-winged, while the females are wingless. Native to North America, fall cankerworms are found from Nova Scotia to South Carolina, west to western Alberta, Colorado, Kansas, and California.

Adults are typically active in fall and early winter. Females lay batches of 50-200 carefully aligned and upright eggs on small twigs and branches. Before leaving, they cover their eggs with scales from their abdomen. Upon hatching in late spring, each…

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Written by vaphc

March 30, 2012 at 7:26 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

One Response

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  1. ok, so I goofed. I thought it was a Paleacrita vernata. Don’t trust everything on the internet.

    I won’t argue with an Entomologist.

    Thank you Lewis Ginter Facebook. You clued me into this.

    vaphc

    March 30, 2012 at 7:30 pm


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