|scientific name Sympistis heliophila |
Subarctic; open bogs, open dry woodland and clearings.
In Alberta, adults have been collected in mid-June.
A small (2.3-2.4 cm wingspan) dark grey-black diurnal moth. The forewings are mottled or grizzled dark grey and black, with small faint pale orbicular and reniform spots and a checkered fringe. The hindwings are bright white with a broad black terminal band and white fringe, and some grey scaling in the basal area. Similar to the sympatric and also diurnal Heliothis borealis, which has solid black in the basal area of the hindwing, and evenly colored (not grizzled) dark black-brown forewings.
Adults are active during the day. They have a very fast buzzing flight making them very difficult to capture. There is a single annual brood.
Rare in Alberta; fairly common and widespread in the holarctic arctic-subarctic.
No North American data. In Europe reported to utilize Empetrum nigrum, Vaccinium uliginosum, and V. myrtillus as larval hosts, all of which are present in Alberta.
Holarctic. In North America reported from Yukon, NWT, and in northern Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Quebec. In Alberta recorded only from the Caribou Mountains, at Wentzel and Pichimi Lakes.
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