Moths of North Carolina
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Apantesis Members:
300 NC Records

Apantesis phalerata (Harris, 1841) - Harnessed Tiger Moth



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Taxonomy
Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: ErebidaeSubfamily: ArctiinaeTribe: ArctiiniP3 Number: 930278.00 MONA Number: 8169.00
Comments: The genus Apantesis is represented by 43 species in North America, including 13 species in North Carolina.
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984); Beadle and Leckie (2012)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, GBIF, BOLDTechnical Description, Adults: Forbes (1960)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Forbes (1960)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: Species of Apantesis and Grammia resemble one another, but Apantesis are generally smaller and the pattern of yellow lines is usually much more reduced, with the median, lower portion of the post-median, and fine vein lines always missing in Apantesis; a good quality photograph showing the forewing pattern is usually enough to distinguish between these genera. However, the hindwings must also be visible to distinguish between the species of Apantesis, and even then only the males can usually be diagnosed; photographs must show the hindwings to be acceptable as records for this genus. Male phalerata are usually recognizable by a cream or pinkish-yellow wash on the hindwings and a sparse band of small subterminal spots; in the other species, the ground color is usually a brighter or more solid yellow or red and the subterminal spots are larger or more confluent. Some males, however, may have larger spots or a brighter color on the hindwings. Questionable males can be easily distinguished by dissection: in phalerata, there is a conspicuous process at the end of the valve and usually a pair of posteriorly-pointing spines at the distal end of the aedeagus (see illustrations in Forbes, 1960). Females of phalerata are similar to those of vittata, phalerata, and nais, having a highly reduced set of pale lines on the forewings and broad, confluent black bands along the outer and inner margins of the hindwing. All three of these species can also have red or pink in the medial and basal areas of the hindwing and it is probably better to rely on males -- which are more often captured in any case -- for identifications.
Structural photos
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 and covered with brown to black bristles; a pale dorsal line is often present (Forbes, 1960). According to Forbes, the larvae of phalerata and vittata are indistinguishable, making rearing necessary to determine their identities.
Larvae ID Requirements: Identifiable only through rearing to adulthood.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Probably occurs statewide
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: Appears to have two main flight periods over most of the state: spring-mid summer and late summer-fall
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Most of our records come from fairly open habitats, including dune grasslands on barrier islands; Longleaf Pine savannas, flatwoods, and sandhills; old fields; and dry upland forests. A few records, however, also come from peatlands and bottomland forests.
Larval Host Plants: Probably polyphagous, feeding on a wide range of plants. Beadle and Leckie (2012) specifically list corn, plantain, dandelion, and clover. We do not have any feeding records in North Carolina. - View
Observation Methods: Males come moderately well to blacklights, with up to 13 collected in a single trap; females are much more rarely collected. Does not come to bait.
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: This species occupies a wide range of habitats and is broadly distributed across the entire state. Appears to be quite secure.

 Photo Gallery for Apantesis phalerata - Harnessed Tiger Moth

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

Recorded by: Mark Basinger on 2024-05-10
Wilson Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Jeff Niznik on 2024-04-29
Chatham Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Basinger on 2024-04-29
Wilson Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Basinger on 2024-04-29
Wilson Co.
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Recorded by: Andrew Clark on 2024-04-24
Cabarrus Co.
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Recorded by: Simpson Eason on 2024-04-17
Durham Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2024-04-01
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2024-04-01
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2023-11-10
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Stephen Dunn, Jeff Niznik on 2023-10-06
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Basinger on 2023-10-02
Brunswick Co.
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Recorded by: Mark Basinger on 2023-09-30
Brunswick Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Rich Teper on 2023-09-25
Caswell Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Stephen Dunn, Jeff Niznik on 2023-09-15
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2023-09-10
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2023-09-10
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2023-09-10
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Simpson Eason on 2023-09-06
Durham Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Jeff Niznik on 2023-09-04
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Michael Pirrello on 2023-09-03
Nash Co.
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Recorded by: David George on 2023-08-15
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Stephen Dunn, Jeff Niznik on 2023-06-25
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: R. Newman on 2023-06-04
Carteret Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Dunn on 2023-05-31
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2023-05-23
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Chuck Smith on 2023-05-21
Davidson Co.
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Recorded by: Chuck Smith on 2023-05-21
Davidson Co.
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Recorded by: Steve Hall, David George, Jeff Niznik on 2023-04-29
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Jeff Niznik on 2023-04-29
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Simpson Eason on 2023-04-21
Durham Co.
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