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Saturniidae - Giant Silkworm Moths

cecropia moth

Classification

 Kingdom: Animalia
 Phylum: Arthropoda
 Subphylum: Hexapoda
 Class: Insecta
 Order: Lepidoptera
 Family: Saturniidae
luna mothThere are around 1,500 species of large moths in this family. Species in this family are found all over the world, but the largest number of species are found in the tropics. The largest moth in North America, the cecropia moth, is a member of this family.

Many of the moths in this family are brightly colored and have large, transparent eyespots. Many species have large, feathery antennae. Most species in this family are nocturnal, and the adults live for a short period, usually less than a week, and do not feed.

Many of the caterpillars of species in this family are brightly colored and covered with spines, although some or smooth or fuzzy! Most of the caterpillars in this family feed on the foliage of trees or shrubs. Many species spin a cocoon that is attached to a host plant or hidden under leaf litter.

Silkworm moths are not in the same family as the mulberry silkworm (Bombyx mori) that is raised in captivity and used to create the silk that is used in clothing, but silk from the cocoons of some some species of giant silkworm moths, like the Chinese Tussah moth (Antheraea pernyi) and the Assam silkmoth (Antheraea assamensis), has been cultivated in the wild and used to create silk cloth.

World Status Key
Least ConcernLeast Concern Near ThreatenedNear Threatened VulnerableVulnerable EndangeredEndangered Critically EndangeredCritically Endangered extinct in the wildExtinct in Wild extinctExtinct
Status and range is taken from ICUN Redlist. If no status is listed, there is not enough data to establish status.

US Status Key
Threatened in US Threatened in US Threatened in New Hampshire Threatened in NH Endangered in US Endangered in US Endangered in NH Endangered in NH Introduced Introduced
Status taken from US Fish and Wildlife and NH Fish and Game

  New Hampshire Species

 

 Species Found in the U.S.

Cecropia Moth - Hyalophora cecropia
Eastern Buckmoth - Hemileuca maia
Imperial Moth - Eacles imperialis
Io Moth - Automeris io
Luna Moth - Actias luna
New England Buckmoth - Hemileuca lucina
Orange-tipped Oakworm Moth - Anisota senatoria
Pine-devil Moth - Citheronia sepulcralis
Pink-striped Oakworm Moth - Anisota virginiensis
Polyphemus Moth - Antheraea polyphemus
Promethea Moth - Callosamia promethea
Rosy Maple Moth - Dryocampa rubicunda
Spiny Oakworm Moth - Anisota stigma
  Hualapai Buckmoth
Iris Eyed Silkmoth
Juno Buckmoth
Lebeau's rothschildia
Louisiana Eyed Silkmoth
Lusk's Pinemoth
Mendocino Saturnia Moth
Mexican Agapema
Neumoegen's Buckmoth
Nevada Buckmoth
Nuttall's Sheepmoth
Oculea Silkmoth
Oslar's eacles
Oslar's Oakworm Moth
Pandora Pinemoth
Patagonia Eyed Silkmoth
Peigler's Oakworm Moth
Randa's Eyed Silkmoth
Range Caterpillar Moth
Rocky Mountain Agapema
Royal Walnut Moth
Slosser's Buckmoth
Splendid Royal Moth
Stone's Buckmoth
Sweetbay Silkmoth
Tamaulipan Agapema
Tricolor Buckmoth
Tuliptree Silkmoth
Velda Pinemoth
Walters' Saturnia Moth
Western Sheepmoth
White-streaked Saturnia Moth
Zephyr Eyed Silkmoth

Species Found in the U.S.

 
Ailanthus Silkmoth
Bicolored Honey Locust Moth
Bisected Honey Locust Moth
Burns' Buckmoth
Calleta Silkmoth
Ceanothus Silkmoth
Cecrops Eyed Silkmoth
Chinati Sheepmoth
Cincta rothschildia
Colombia Silkmoth
Consular Oakworm Moth
Doris' Pinemoth
Electra Buckmoth
Griffin's Sheepmoth
Grote's Buckmoth
Hera Buckmoth
 

Additional Information

Key: profile Profile Photos Photos Video Video Audio Audio New Hampshire Species NH Species

Cecropia Moth - Hyalophora cecropia profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The Cecropia moth is found across the eastern United States and Canada from Nova Scotia south to Florida and west to the Rocky Mountains.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Cecropia Moth - Hyalophora cecropia profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The Cecropia moth is a large moth. It can have a wingspan as wide as six inches.
Source: University of Florida IFAS Extension Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Eastern Buckmoth - Hemileuca maia profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The eastern buckmothmoth is found across the eastern United States from Maine west to Kansas and south to Florida and Eastern Texas.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Eastern Buckmoth - Hemileuca maia profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The eastern buckmothmoth caterpillar is covered with venomous spines that can cause pain and swelling when they sting a human.
Source: University of Florida IFAS Extension Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Imperial Moth - Eacles imperialis profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The eastern buckmothmoth is found across the eastern United States from Maine west to Nebraska and south to Florida and Texas.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Io Moth - Automeris io profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The Io moth is found across southern Canada south through Maine to Florida and Nebraska and Colorado south to Texas and Arizona and into Mexico and Costa Rica.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Io Moth - Automeris io profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The Io moth has large eyespots on its hindwings.
Source: University of Florida IFAS Extension Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Io Moth - Automeris io Photos New Hampshire Species
The Io moth caterpillar is bright green with clusters of tiny spines that can deliver a painful sting.
Source: Jeffery Pippen, Duke University Intended Audience: General Reading Level: N/A Teacher Section: No

Luna Moth - Actias luna profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The luna moth is green and has a long tail.
Source: University of Florida IFAS Extension Intended Audience: General Reading Level: High School Teacher Section: No

Luna Moth - Actias luna Photos New Hampshire Species
Many people consider the luna moth to be the world's most beautiful moth.
Source: Jeffery Pippen, Duke University Intended Audience: General Reading Level: N/A Teacher Section: No

Luna Moth - Actias luna profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The luna moth is found across Canada from Nova Scotia west to Saskatchewan south to Florida, the Gulf coast, Texas, and North Dakota.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

New England Buckmoth - Hemileuca lucina profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The New England buckmoth is found in southern Maine, New Hampshire, southeastern Vermont, and Massachusetts.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Orange-tipped Oakworm Moth - Anisota senatoria profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The orange-tipped oakworm moth is found from southern Maine west to the Great Lakes and south to Georgia, Mississippi, Louisiana, and Texas.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Pine-devil Moth - Citheronia sepulcralis profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The pine-devil moth is found from southern Maine west to Ohio and south to Florida and Louisiana.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Pine-devil Moth - Citheronia sepulcralis Photos New Hampshire Species
The pine-devil moth is a deep chocolate brown.
Source: Jeffery Pippen, Duke University Intended Audience: General Reading Level: N/A Teacher Section: No

Pink-striped Oakworm Moth - Anisota virginiensis profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The pink-striped oakworm moth is found from Nova Scotia west across the Great Lakes states to Manitoba, Canada and Minnesota and south to central Florida, the Gulf Coast, and east Texas.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Polyphemus Moth - Antheraea polyphemus profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The polyphemus moth is found across much of Canada and the United States.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Promethea Moth - Callosamia promethea profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The polyphemus moth is found across much of the eastern U.S. from southern Quebec, Canada, Maine and the Great Plains south to Florida and east Texas.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Rosy Maple Moth - Dryocampa rubicunda profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The rosy maple moth is found from Nova Scotia west through Quebec to Ontario and Minnesota and south to Florida, the Gulf Coast, and east Texas.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Rosy Maple Moth - Dryocampa rubicunda Photos New Hampshire Species
The rosy maple moth can vary in color from a combination of pink and yellow to pink and cream, to all pink, to no or very little pink at all.
Source: Jeffery Pippen, Duke University Intended Audience: General Reading Level: N/A Teacher Section: No

Spiny Oakworm Moth - Anisota stigma profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The spiny oakworm moth is found from Southeastern Canada and southern New England west to Minnesota, south to central Florida, the Gulf Coast, and central Texas.
Source: Butterflies and Moths of North America Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No

Spiny Oakworm Moth - Anisota stigma profile Photos New Hampshire Species
The spiny oakworm moth is only found in pine barrens and scrub habitats.
Source: New York Natural Heritage Program Intended Audience: General Reading Level: Middle School Teacher Section: No