Moths of North Carolina
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View PDFNotodontidae Members: 142 NC Records

Datana ministra (Drury, 1773) - Yellow-necked Caterpillar Moth


Taxonomy
Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: NotodontidaeSubfamily: PhalerinaeP3 Number: 930033.00 MONA Number: 7902.00
Comments: One of 16 species in this genus, all but one of which occurs in North America north of Mexico (Miller et al., 2018). Nine have been recorded in North Carolina.
Species Status: Adult characters seem to indicate a close relationship to angusii, but larval characters link ministra more closely with integerrima (Miller et al., 2018).
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984); Beadle and Leckie (2012)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONATechnical Description, Adults: Forbes (1948); Miller et al. (2018)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Forbes (1948); Wagner (2005); Miller et al. (2018)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: A reddish- to yellowish-brown Datana, with a crenate outer margin and showing little contrast across the width of the forewing, from the costal edge to the inner margin (Forbes, 1948; Miller et al., 2018). In drexelli and major, both of which also have a crenate outer margin, the anterior portion of the forewing is paler or richer golden yellow above the cubitus vein and darker below it. Datana angusii, the only other Datana with a crenate outer margin, also shows little contrast across the wing but the ground color is umber brown, without red or yellow shadings, and the lines are darker brown than in ministra. Worn or poorly marked specimens should be dissected to confirm their identification.
Wingspan: 40-50 mm (Forbes, 1948)
Adult Structural Features: Valves of the males have a single, smooth transverse flange; in angusii, which also has a single flange, the flange is dentate or tuberculate (Forbes, 1948; Miller et al., 2018). See Forbes and Miller et al. for additional details and illustrations. Miller et al., also describe distinctive features of the female structures.
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from photos showing hindwings, abdomen, or other specialized views [e.g., frons, palps, antennae, undersides].
Immatures and Development: Larvae are black with pale yellow, continuous lines. The prothoracic shield is usually yellowish, as are the prolegs.
Larvae ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos, especially where associated with known host plants.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution:
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
Immature Dates:
 High Mountains (HM) ≥ 4,000 ft.
 Low Mountains (LM) < 4,000 ft.
 Piedmont (Pd)
 Coastal Plain (CP)

Click on graph to enlarge
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Oak barrens are preferred but other woodland and shrubland habitats are used, including parks and yards (Miller et al., 2018). Our records come from both dry and mesic hardwood forests, as well as maritime shrublands, Longleaf pine habitats, and peatlands. Mountain records come from cove forests and northern hardwoods,
Larval Host Plants: Larvae are polyphagous, feeding on many species of hardwood trees and shrubs. Miller et al. (2018) mention Oaks as frequently used; other confirmed species include Apple, Basswood, Beech, Birch, Chestnut, Cottoneaster, Elm, Fetterbush, and Willow. Hazelnut, Hop-Hornbeam, and Rose have also been reported (Robinson et al., 2010).
Wikipedia
See also Habitat Account for General Forests and Shrublands
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: G5 S5
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
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 Photo Gallery for Datana ministra - Yellow-necked Caterpillar Moth

Photos: 23

Recorded by: David George on 2021-07-31
Durham Co.
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Recorded by: Owen McConnell on 2021-07-30
Graham Co.
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Recorded by: David George on 2021-07-29
Durham Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-07-17
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-07-16
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-07-14
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-07-12
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: David L. Heavner on 2021-07-10
Chatham Co.
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Recorded by: David L. Heavner on 2021-07-10
Chatham Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2021-07-06
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: J. Thomson, Z. Cowan on 2020-09-16
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-07-22
Guilford Co.
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Recorded by: Owen McConnell on 2020-07-06
Durham Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2020-07-05
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2020-07-02
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Steve Hall and Bo Sullivan on 2018-07-18
Ashe Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2017-07-25
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2016-08-07
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Robert Gilson on 2015-08-12
Mecklenburg Co.
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Recorded by: Darryl Willis on 2014-05-17
Cabarrus Co.
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Recorded by: Doug Blatny/Jackie Nelson on 2012-07-09
Ashe Co.
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Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2011-08-09
Warren Co.
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Recorded by: J. Anderson on 2010-07-29
Ashe Co.
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