Moths of North Carolina
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View PDFErebidae Members: 75 NC Records

Catocala lineella Grote, 1872 - Little Lined Underwing

Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: ErebidaeSubfamily: ErebinaeTribe: CatocaliniP3 Number: 930860.00 MONA Number: 8878.10
Comments: One of 103 species in this genus that occur in North America (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010, 2015), 67 of which have been recorded in North Carolina. Lineella was included by Barnes and McDunnough (1918) in their Group XX (also adopted by Forbes, 1954), which feed on Oaks. This group originally included amica and jair, with lineella now added as a separate species. At least one undescribed species may eventually be added. Catocala lineella has been treated as a form of amica, but was restored to full species status by Gall (1990), who also considered forms melanotica, aurantiaca, and novangliae of amica as a synonyms of lineella. Gall and Hawks (2010) treated form nerissa as an additional synonym of lineella.
Field Guide Descriptions: Beadle and Leckie (2012)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONA                                                                                 
Adult Markings: A medium-sized Underwing, with mottled, dark gray forewings and yellow-orange hindwings that lack a median black band. Grote (1872) described lineella as very similar to Catocala amica, but darker and "powdered with glaucous, bluish- or greenish-gray, and black scales". The curvifascia band that is present in some forms of amica -- at least as a well-defined dark arc rather than a diffuse shade -- is absent in lineella (Barnes and McDunnough, 1918; D.F. Schweitzer, pers. comm.). Catocala jair is usually more uniformly dark (in our populations) and has a straighter, less dentate postmedian line (Barnes and Mcdunnough, 1918).
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) ≥ 4,000 ft.
 Low Mountains (LM) < 4,000 ft.
 Piedmont (Pd)
 Coastal Plain (CP)

Click on graph to enlarge
Habitats and Life History
Larval Host Plants: Larvae feed on Oaks, particularly in the Red and Black group (Wagner et al., 2011)
See also Habitat Account for General Oak-Hickory Forests
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: G5 S4
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.

 Photo Gallery for Catocala lineella - Little Lined Underwing

Photos: 11

Recorded by: Lior Carlson on 2021-07-24
Orange Co.
Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-06-14
Wake Co.
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-06-27
Guilford Co.
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2020-06-27
Guilford Co.
Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2019-06-06
Onslow Co.
Recorded by: Mark Shields on 2019-06-06
Onslow Co.
Recorded by: Ken Kneidel on 2018-08-11
Yancey Co.
Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Bo Sullivan on 2018-07-15
Madison Co.
Recorded by: Ed Corey on 2013-06-06
Bladen Co.
Recorded by: Taylor Piephoff on 2010-05-14
Mecklenburg Co.
Recorded by: SPH on 1996-07-18
Martin Co.
Comment: Wingspan = 4.4 cm; forewing length = 2.2 cm.