Last week I found this eight-spotted forester moth (Lepidoptera: Noctuidae: Alypia octomaculata) feeding on a variety of flowers at Side Cut Metropark near Maumee, Ohio. First it was visiting a mullein foxglove (Dasistoma macrophylla, Scrophulariaceae), then it moved over to a wild bergamot (Monarda fistulosa, Lamiaceae) before sampling some other plants. While adults feed on nectar from a variety of flowers, the larvae feed on the leaves of vines like grape and Virginia creeper.
Eight-spotted foresters are uncommon among moths in that adults fly and feed during the day. Most moths are nocturnal, but this individual was fluttering about several hours after dawn broke. Because they’re diurnal, they’re sometimes mistaken for butterflies.