Moths of North Carolina
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22 NC Records

Ponometia parvula (Walker, 1865) - No Common Name

Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: NoctuidaeSubfamily: AcontiinaeTribe: AcontiiniP3 Number: 931325.00 MONA Number: 9083.00
Comments: One of 34 species in this genus that occur in North America north of Mexico (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010), six of which have been recorded in North Carolina
Species Status: Described by Walker (1865) based on a specimen in the British Museum. Later described in more detail by Hampson (1910), but assigning the type as georgica, apparently based on Fruva georgica, described by Grote (1881) from a specimen from Georgia
Field Guide Descriptions: Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, GBIF, BOLDTechnical Description, Adults: Hampson (1910); Poole (2016)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: A medium-small, yellow Acontiine. The ground color of the forewings is ochraceous-yellow, shaded with rufous, particular a subapical triangle extending inward from the outer margin to the reniform (Hampson, 1910). The transverse lines are absent and the only markings are a small, black orbicular and a smaller, less distinct brownish ring representing the reniform. The fringe are dark, lead colored. The hindwing is whitish but suffused with reddish to yellowish-brown. The thorax is ochraceous-yellow and the abdomen is "gilded-cinereous" (Walker, 1865). Ponometia torticina is similar in size and appearance but lacks the rufous subapical triangle (Hampson, 1910); its range is also western and does not apparently overlap with parvula (Poole, 2016). More likely to be confused with parvula is Marimatha nigrofimbria, whose ranges overlap. Nigrofimbria, however, is a brighter yellow and again lacks the rufous subapical triangle.
Wingspan: 24 mm (Hampson, 1910)
Adult Structural Features: Male and female reproductive structures are illustrated by Poole (2016). Those of the male are similar to those of Ponometia tortricina but the bursa of the females is much less sclerotized in parvula than in tortricina.
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Immatures and Development: Apparently undescribed
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: This species appears to be restricted to the southern Atlantic Coastal Plain and Florida (Poole, 2016). In North Carolina, our records all come from the southern half of the Coastal Plain, including the Fall-line Sandhills
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: Our records extend over most of the growing season, from April to September; we do not yet have enough records to determine if there are separate flights
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Almost all of our records come from open, wet habitats, including Longleaf Pine Savannas, Sandhill Seeps, and sedgy habitats associated with filled-in beaver ponds. Only one of our records comes from dry Pine-Scrub Oak Sandhill habitat, with the nearest open, herb-dominated wetland located approximately 250 meters away.
Larval Host Plants: Unknown but six other members of this genus for which host plants have been identified all feed on the flowers of composites (Asteraceae) (Wagner et al., 2011). At Fort Bragg and Camp Mackall, where many of our records come from, members of the Asteraceae that are found in the same habitats include Southern Swamp Aster (Eurybia paludosa), which has a range closely coinciding with P. parvula, as well as several species of Eupatorium, whose ranges do not match as closely (see Hall, 2004). - View
Observation Methods: All of our records come from blacklight traps
See also Habitat Account for Loamy, Fire-maintained Herblands
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status: W3
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: GNR S2S3
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
Comments: We have few records for this apparently globally restricted species. It also appears to be specialized on wet, Longleaf-pine habitats, but we still do not have enough information about its host plants or habitat associations to be able to give an accurate assessment of its conservation status.

 Photo Gallery for Ponometia parvula - No common name

Photos: 2

Recorded by: Richard Teper on 2022-05-31
Moore Co.
Recorded by: Steve Hall on 2016-04-28
Harnett Co.