|scientific name Spartiniphaga inops |
grasslands region, salt marshes, wetlands and wet prairie
A medium-small (2.5-3.0 cm wingspan) moth with rather smooth appearing grey-brown or grayish pink moth. The forewing markings consist of a thin dark partial antemedian line, a thin curving postmedian line, lightly scalloped at the veins, and an even pale subterminal line. The ground color shades slightly darker toward the outer margin and fringe. The most prominent marking is round or oblong dark spot formed by the lower half of the reniform spot. The hindwings are paler, with indistinct narrow median and postmedian lines and discal bar. Antennae simple and sexes similar. The illustrated specimens are from the Edgerton area.
Poorly known. Adults are nocturnal and come to light. There appears to be a single annual brood in Alberta, with adults flying in August through early September. The larvae live as borers in the stems of the hostplant. The only reported larval hostplant is cordgrass (Spartina sp.)(Forbes, 1954). Alkali cordgrass (S. gracilis) is a possible Alberta host.
Nova Scotia to Alberta, south to Massachusetts, Ohio and Iowa. In Alberta found throughout the grasslands region, north to Edgerton and west to Calgary. In Quebec inops is found associated with salt marshes, while in Ohio it is found in wetlands and wet prairie.
Although the grey-brown form is the common form in Alberta, pink specimens are not rare. The darker grey western populations have been named subspecies insipida (Stkr.), but no subspecies are recognized at present (Hodges et al, 1983).
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