|scientific name Epirrhoe sperryi |
common name Small Argent & Sable
It frequents open wooded areas, edges, etc.
A small (1.8-2.0 cm wingspan) day-flying moth with black and white wings. The black forewings are crossed by a basal line of scattered white scales, a more prominent white antemedian band and a prominent white postmedian band divided by a series of small black dots and bent sharply outward near the midpoint. The subterminal area is black and is crossed by a subterminal line consisting of a series of small white crescents. Essentially the same pattern occurs on the hindwings. The fringe is black checkered with white at the veins. Very similar to forms of both Rheumaptera hastata and Rheumaptera subhastata, both of which are larger and usually have more extensive areas of black or white. E. alternata is also larger and is mostly grey, not black, and lacks the crisp, busy pattern of sperryi.
E. sperryi is a diurnal moth. There is a single brood in Alberta, with adults from early May through early July, with the peak in June. The early stages and larval hosts are apparently unknown.
Unknown, but other closely related Palaearctic species all feed on species of bedstraw (Gallium), which is the likely host for sperryi as well.
NL to YT. In Alberta it has been collected in the Boreal, Parklands and Mountain regions, where it is locally common.
Until described as a separate species by Herbulot in 1951, sperryi was thought to be conspecific with Palaearctic E. tristata (L.) and was listed by both Bowman and Jones as E. tristata. There are several closely related and almost identical looking species in the Palaearctic. The specimen illustrated above is from Dry Island P. Pk., AB.
Uwe-Jens Oppel (2015-10-31)
2015 for the first time and common in Fort McMurray
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