Cecropia Moth - Hyalophora cecropia
The cecropia moth is the largest North American moth. It has a wingspan of 5-6 inches. It is a very colorful moth. It has a red body with white stripes, reddish-brown wings with crescent-shaped white marks, and eyespots on the upper tips of its wings. The edges of its wings are a light tan. The cecropia caterpillar is about four inches in length and is greenish-blue and it has two rows of red, yellow, and blue spiny tubercles on its body.
The cecropia moth is found east of the Rocky Mountains in the United States and Canada. The cecropia moth is found in New Hampshire.
The cecropia moth is found in open areas with trees.
The cecropia caterpillar eats the leaves of many trees and shrubs including ash, birch, box elder, alder, elm, maple, poplar, wild cherry, plum, willow, apple, and lilac. The cecropia moth does not eat. It's only purpose it to mate. It has no digestive system and a non-functioning mouth. It only lives for a few weeks.
The female cecropia moth lays rows of eggs on both sides on a leaf on a tree or shrub. The eggs hatch in 10-14 days and the caterpillars begin eating the leaves of the host tree or shrub. The cecropia cocoon is crescent shaped and is attached to a tree branch. There is one generation of cecropia moths born each year.
The cecropia moth is mostly nocturnal and is rarely seen in the day.