Moths of North Carolina
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23 NC Records

Tornos abjectarius Hulst, 1887 - No Common Name

Superfamily: Geometroidea Family: GeometridaeSubfamily: EnnominaeTribe: BoarmiiniP3 Number: 910902.00 MONA Number: 6487.00
Comments: One of seven species in this New World genus that occur in North America north of Mexico (Rindge, 1954), three of which have been recorded in North Carolina
Species Status: Rindge (1954) described several subspecies, of which only calcasiatus appears to occur in North Carolina. This subspecies is found from east Texas north to east Kansas, east to the Carolinas and Georgia.
Field Guide Descriptions: Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, GBIF, BOLDTechnical Description, Adults: Rindge (1954)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Early stages were unknown to Rindge (1954)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: A medium-sized, yellow-brown Geometrid with narrow, elongated wings held horizontally at rest. Sexes are dimorphic. The ground color of the forewings of the males is ochraceous -- in subspecies calcasiatus, with the "upper surface of wings dark ochraceous, overlain with reddish brown, dark gray, and black-brown scales, becoming gray-black near outer margin, with median area of forewings concolorous with remainder of wing or only very slightly suffused with darker scales" (Rindge, 1954). Females are more ochraceous and generally lighter. A dark discal spot with a scale tuft is present in both sexes, as are both the antemedian and postmedian lines; a line of pale gray spots may also present as the subterminal line. Hindwings are concolorous with the forewings, darkened at the base. Males can be distinguished from those of T. scolopacinarius, which are more gray-brown and with less contrast between the terminal area and the rest of the wing. Females of the two species are more similar but with again a more contrasting terminal area in abjectarius. In some cases, specimens need to be dissected to be certain of their identity.
Wingspan: 22-29 mm, males; 21-30 mm, females (Rindge, 1954)
Adult Structural Features: Male and female reproductive structures are described and illustrated by Rindge (1954), with keys provided for both sexes covering all species in North America.
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from photos showing hindwings, abdomen, or other specialized views [e.g., frons, palps, antennae, undersides].
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Our records all come from the Coastal Plain. However, the range map in Rindge (1954) shows records only from the western part of the state.
County Map: Clicking on a county returns the records for the species in that county.
Flight Dates:
 High Mountains (HM) ‚Č• 4,000 ft.
 Low Mountains (LM) < 4,000 ft.
 Piedmont (Pd)
 Coastal Plain (CP)

Click on graph to enlarge
Flight Comments: We have records spanning most of the growing season, from March to September. There is some indication of two or more flights but we do not yet have enough records to clearly define a pattern.
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Almost all of our records come from pond, lake, or river shorelines. One record comes from a wet Longleaf Pine savanna.
Larval Host Plants: Unknown (Rindge, 1954). - View
Observation Methods: Appears to come well to blacklights
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status: W3
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: GNR S2S3->[S3S4]
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
Comments: This species appears to be somewhat specialized in terms of habitat, but without knowing more about its host plants, distribution, and abundance within the state, are unable to accurately assess its conservation status.

 Photo Gallery for Tornos abjectarius - No common name

Photos: 9

Recorded by: Jim Petranka, Steve Hall and Bo Sullivan on 2022-08-29
Moore Co.
Recorded by: Jim Petranka, Steve Hall and Bo Sullivan on 2022-08-28
Scotland Co.
Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2020-08-04
Orange Co.
Recorded by: Julie Tuttle on 2017-02-24
Chatham Co.
Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2016-03-12
Warren Co.
Recorded by: L. Amos on 2015-04-13
Warren Co.
Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2011-04-03
Warren Co.
Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2010-03-30
Warren Co.
Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2009-09-07
Warren Co.