Moths of North Carolina
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View PDFCossidae Members: 53 NC Records

Cossula magnifica (Strecker, 1876) - Pecan Carpenterworm Moth


Taxonomy
Superfamily: Cossoidea Family: CossidaeSubfamily: CossulinaeTribe: [Cossulini]P3 Number: 640047.00 MONA Number: 2674.00
Comments: A resident of the southeastern U.S., this is the sole representative of the genus in North America.
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, BAMONATechnical Description, Adults: Barnes and McDunnough (1911)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: Distinctive. The basal three-quarters of the forewing is powdery-gray (lightest subterminally) with fine black striations, heaviest at the base. The end of the forewing bears a creamy-brown elliptical disk, speckled, streaked, and edged in dark brown and black. The width of the forewings is almost uniform from base to outer margin, broadening only slightly at distal end. The raised, silver-gray thoracic scales encompass the base of the forewings imparting upon the moth something of a "cowled" appearance.
Wingspan: 32 mm, male (Barnes and McDunnough, type specimen)
Adult Structural Features: Length from tip of head to apex of forewing at rest averages 19.3 mm (n=4).
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Immatures and Development: Larvae: Late instar brown with concolorous, raised dorsal and supraspiracular bumps. Steep, exaggerated, orange prothoracic shield on a strongly humped first thoracic segment bears a lateral black band across the front just above the orange head. Last anterior segment dark and elongated giving the appearance of a false head. Because they develop in wood, larvae are rarely seen.
Larvae ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos, especially where associated with known host plants.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Most of our records come from the Coastal Plain and the adjoining eastern Piedmont; one historic record comes from the western Piedmont
County Map: Clicking on a county returns the records for the species in that county.
Flight Dates:
 High Mountains (HM) ≥ 4,000 ft.
 Low Mountains (LM) < 4,000 ft.
 Piedmont (Pd)
 Coastal Plain (CP)

Click on graph to enlarge
Flight Comments: Univoltine, adults fly from May to July
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: North Carolina records for this species come from a wide range of woody habitats, including maritime forest and scrub, xeric Carolina bay rims and sandhills, mesic hardwood slopes and ridges, reservoir shorelines, and wooded residential neighborhoods.
Larval Host Plants: Larvae are borers in oaks and hickories, including Live Oak (Bailey, 1892). Pecan and Persimmon have also been specifically as hosts used by this species (Covell, 1984), as have Southern Red Oak and Cherrybark Oak (US Forest Service). In North Carolina, it has recently been reported from Hazel (M. Bertone, BugGuide, 2017)
Observation Methods: Attracted to lights but since the mouthparts of the adults are rudimentary, they do not feed and consequently do not come to bait or visit flowers.
Wikipedia
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: G5 [S4]
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it in state parks and on other public lands.
Comments: Uncommon to locally common in the Coastal Plain and Piedmont but apparently rare in or absent from the Mountains.

 Photo Gallery for Cossula magnifica - Pecan Carpenterworm Moth

31 photos are available. Only the most recent 30 are shown.

Recorded by: R. Newman on 2021-07-23
Carteret Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-06-19
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: R. Newman on 2021-06-18
Carteret Co.
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Recorded by: Simpson Eason on 2021-06-14
Durham Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2021-05-31
Onslow Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-05-27
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-05-27
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Kyle Kittelberger, Brian Bockhahn on 2020-07-16
Polk Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-06-21
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-06-13
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-06-03
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-05-31
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2020-05-23
Onslow Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2019-06-14
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2019-06-06
Onslow Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2019-06-02
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2018-06-05
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2017-05-27
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Ed Corey on 2017-05-22
Dare Co.
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Recorded by: ASH on 2012-08-27
Moore Co.
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Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2012-06-14
Warren Co.
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Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2012-06-01
Warren Co.
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Recorded by: Harry Wilson on 2011-06-30
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Harry Wilson on 2011-06-30
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: K. Bischof on 2011-06-19
Beaufort Co.
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Recorded by: K. Bischof on 2011-06-19
Beaufort Co.
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Recorded by: Taylor Piephoff on 2010-06-14
Mecklenburg Co.
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Recorded by: Parker Backstrom on 2010-06-14
Lee Co.
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Recorded by: Newman,Randy on 2007-06-20
Carteret Co.
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Recorded by: Newman, Randy on 2006-07-10
Carteret Co.
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