Random Insect: Salt marsh moth

saltmarshmoth

Salt marsh moth (Lepidoptera: Erebidae: Estigmene acrea) photographed 05/25/2014 near Palmyra Michigan.

Salt marsh moths (Lepidoptera: Erebidae: Estigmene acrea) can be found throughout most of North America, and are often seen near lights at night. While they do inhabit salt marshes, they’re equally at home in fields, open woodlands, meadows, and prairies. The larvae are generalists that will feed on a wide variety of plants, both wild and cultivated.

saltmarshmoth2

Salt marsh moth (Lepidoptera: Erebidae: Estigmene acrea) photographed 05/25/2014 near Palmyra Michigan.

When these moths are threatened they often drop to the ground and release a foul smell from glands beneath their wings. This defense mechanism makes some predators think twice about eating these otherwise vulnerable, soft-bodied insects.

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About Jeremy Sell

Science and nature nerd.
This entry was posted in Entomology, Random Insect and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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