Moths of North Carolina
Scientific Name:
Common Name:
Family (Alpha):
« »
View PDFErebidae Members:
Virbia Members:
265 NC Records

Virbia aurantiaca (Hübner, [1831]) - Orange Holomelina Moth


Taxonomy
Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: ErebidaeSubfamily: ArctiinaeTribe: ArctiiniP3 Number: 930299.00 MONA Number: 8121.00 MONA Synonym: Holomelina aurantiaca
Comments: One of fourteen species in North America, five of which occur in North Carolina
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984; as Holomelina aurantiaca); Beadle and Leckie (2012)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, BAMONATechnical Description, Adults: Forbes (1960); Zaspel et al. (2008)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Forbes (1960); Wagner (2005)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: Virbia aurantiaca is one of several small brownish- or yellowish-orange Virbias, all of which may be difficult to distinguish, particularly based on photographs alone; this is especially true for shots showing just the forewings. The forewings are generally yellowish-brown, with a darker discal spot and sub-median band sometimes apparent. The hindwings are a bright orange or pink in both sexes, differing from opella in this respect, in which the males typically have dark hindwings. There is usually a dark discal spot and a fairly wide black band running along the outer margin. These blackish areas are more sharply defined and less irregular than in females of opella. Males of rubicundaria, conversely, lack dark markings on the hindwing and are generally smaller and brighter than in aurantiaca; dissection may be needed, however, to distinguish pale, unmarked forms of male aurantiaca from rubicundaria (see Forbes, 1960; and Zaspel et al., 2008 for illustrations and descriptions). Female aurantiaca and rubicundaria are more likely be confused (Zaspel et al., 2008), since both have dark markings on the hindwing; female rubicundaria are again generally smaller and brighter pinkish-orange than aurantiaca.
Forewing Length: 10 mm, males, 9.7 mm, females (Zaspel et al., 2008)
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from photos showing hindwings, abdomen, or other specialized views [e.g., frons, palps, antennae, undersides].
Immatures and Development: Forbes (1960) describes one larvae as dark with a conspicuous broad, pale dorsal stripe and with blackish spines. Wagner (2005) illustrates a grayish larva with a pale dorsal stripe and with at least some white spines mixed in with darker ones. Given the lack of information on Virbia larvae, rearing to adulthood is needed to confirm their identities.
Larvae ID Requirements: Identifiable only through rearing to adulthood.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Probably occurs statewide except possibly the High Mountains and barrier islands
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: Appears to have three fairly distinct flights
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Found in most open and forested habitats in the state except from barrier islands and the High Mountans. We have records from peatlands; Longleaf Pine savannas, flatwoods, sandhills, and sandhill seeps; floodplain forests; and dry ridges.
Larval Host Plants: Host plant use has apparently not been observed in the wild (Zaspel et al., 2008), but probably feeds on low forbs, as reported for other members of this genus (see Forbes, 1960 and Wagner, 2005).
Observation Methods: Comes moderately well to blacklights, usually in small numbers bt with up to 45 collected in a single trap. Adults do not feed, so do not come to bait. Most Virbias can be flushed from their habitats during the day, indicating they are at least partially diurnal (Zaspel et al., 2008)
Wikipedia
See also Habitat Account for General Mixed Habitats
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
Comments: Given its abundance, widespread distribution, and generalized habitat use, this species appears to be secure in the state.

 Photo Gallery for Virbia aurantiaca - Orange Holomelina Moth

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

Recorded by: Steve Hall, Bo Sullivan, Jim Petranka on 2022-07-24
Moore Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2022-07-13
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2022-07-11
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2022-07-11
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2022-07-01
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2022-06-29
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2022-06-15
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2022-06-15
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2022-06-15
Wake Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Susie Moffat on 2022-05-05
Chatham Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2022-05-03
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2021-10-03
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2021-10-02
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2021-09-26
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2021-09-02
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2021-08-27
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2021-08-18
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Owen McConnell on 2021-07-29
Graham Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: tom ward on 2021-05-26
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2021-05-21
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-05-04
Wake Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2021-05-02
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2020-10-05
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2020-10-05
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-10-02
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-09-23
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Owen McConnell on 2020-09-19
Durham Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Owen McConnell on 2020-09-18
Granville Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-09-13
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-09-01
Guilford Co.
Comment: