Abagrotis dodi    



habitat
It is reported to fly in open conifer forest, and in sandy open montane.

identification
A small (2.4-2.5 cm wingspan) moth with dark brown forewings and dark sooty brown hindwings, with few obvious markings. The forewings may range in color from grey brown to red-brown, but Alberta specimens examined are dark (almost black) red-brown. Markings consist of the round black orbicular and vertical oblong black reniform spots, outlined with slightly lighter brown. And a close examination will also show some black scaling marking partial antemedian and postmedian lines, and lighter scales marking the subterminal line. Sexes are alike, with females sometimes a bit paler and with a heavier, broader abdomen. They fly with and are easy to mistake for A. placida. Abagrotis placida are larger and have a contrasting paler terminal band on the forewings and slightly paler hindwings. Questionable specimens can be identified by examining the genitalia. Female have a rounded bursa with a single large signa (more oblong with a much “fatter” vesica with a larger more prominent terminal cornutus than placida. Adults and genitalia of both sexes are illustrated in Lafontaine (1998).

life history
Almost nothing is known. In Alberta there is a single brood with adults in later summer. Adults are attracted to light. The earlier stages are unknown.

range
Abagrotis dodi is a rarely collected western species, described originally from Dod specimens from the head of Pine Creek, just southwest of Calgary. It has been collected from southern Yukon south to southern UT and CO and west to central NV and WA. In Alberta it has been collected from the Kootenay Plains south to the Kananaskis area. It is reported to fly in open conifer forest. The only recent Alberta collection is a series collected in sandy open montane at Whirlpool Point in the Kootenay Plains by Chris Schmidt in 2006. The open circles on the map are literature records from Lafontaine (op. cit.)

notes
This little moth has rarely been collected, and as of 1998 was known from only about two dozen specimens (Lafontaine, op. cit.). Like many “rare” notuids, it may be common in the right habitat, as Schmidt took almost a dozen specimens on July 26, 2006.

people
species page authorAnweiler, G. G.2007 

quick link
http://entomology.museums.ualberta.ca/searching_species_details.php?s=6122

 

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