Agonopterix pulvipennella

Feather-duster Moth
Agonopterix pulvipennella

POHL: 42-0079
MONA: 0867
GenBank: 262441

Head: Top of head deep reddish-brown; face whitish. Nose cone (palpi) long, curved up over head; reddish, rough brush-like on underside, pale yellowish on top side, last segment yellow and brown striped. Tips sharp, dark.
Antenna: Dark brown to gray. Base segment longer, scaled on underside.
Thorax: Dark brown or light brown, speckled with dark scales.
Wings: Two forms. Dark brown or light brown speckled with dark scales. Base of wings usually paler. A medium sized dark brown, squarish patch at centre of mid-wing has a small bright white dot at the lower inside corner. On lighter individuals, two dark spots above the squarish patch; on dark individuals, black central patch is barely visible. Outer (costal) edge of wing is marked with dark brown bars. Fringe reddish-brown. Hindwings pale gray. Fringe lighter, with a dark line along wing edges.
Legs: Brown, intermittently covered with white scales. Segment tips usually whitish, sometimes tinged with pink.
Abdomen: Top of abdomen grayish-yellow. Underside whitish with black lines and two rows of spots.

Size: 8 to 11 mm long. Wingspan 18-24 mm.

Habitat: Forest edges and meadows.

Food: Boneset Eupatorium, Goldenrod Solidago and Nettles Urtica (one report).

Flight Time: April to June; again in September to October.

Life Cycle: Adults over-winter. Females lay eggs in late spring on Boneset and Goldenrod. Larvae roll leaves length-wise. Pupate in summer. Pupa reported to be hairy. Emerge as adults again in the fall. Caterpillar entirely green, abdomen tip edged in brown; sometimes with 3 darker lines. Head has brown marks; shield has brown dots at sides. One generation per year. Adults attracted to diffuse light. Often seen on screen doors rather than at moth lights.

Comments: Common in Ontario.

For information on synonyms, references and type specimens see next page