Moths of North Carolina
Scientific Name:
Common Name:
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View PDFErebidae Members:
Catocala Members:
2 NC Records

Catocala amestris Strecker, 1874 - Three-staff Underwing

No image for this species.
Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: ErebidaeSubfamily: ErebinaeTribe: CatocaliniP3 Number: 930830.00 MONA Number: 8844.00
Comments: One of 103 species in this genus that occur in North America (Gall and Hawks, 2010; Kons and Borth, 2015a,b), 67 of which have been recorded in North Carolina.
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONA, GBIF, BOLD                                                                                 
Adult Markings: The ground color is brownish gray, with the basal and terminal areas usually solidly gray. The antemdian and postmedian lines are double and heavily black, forming a complex pattern of strong loops. The reniform also has a double black line around it but is often obscured by black shading (Sargent, 1976). The hindwing is a fairly deep yellow-orange and crossed by black bands. The inner band is sharply angled and the outer band can be either complete or broken.
Wingspan: 45-50 mm (Sargent, 1976)
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Distribution in North Carolina
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)

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Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Our two records come from very different habitats, one from a xeric, coastal fringe sand ridge and the other from the foothills of the Blue Ridge
Larval Host Plants: Larvae are stenophagous, feeding on Amorpha species; Wagner et al. (2011) list both Amorpha fruticosa and A. canescens. Locust has also been reported (Sargent, 1976). - View
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status: W3
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: G4 [SH]
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.