Moths of North Carolina
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View PDFNoctuidae Members:
Acronicta Members:
225 NC Records

Acronicta ovata Grote, 1873 - Ovate Dagger


Taxonomy
Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: NoctuidaeSubfamily: AcronictinaeP3 Number: 931463.00 MONA Number: 9243.00
Comments: One of 74 species in this genus found in North America north of Mexico (Schmidt and Anweiler, 2020), 42 of which have been recorded in North Carolina. This species is placed in subgenus Lepitoreuma by Schmidt and Anweiler, and in the Increta Species Group. Other members of this group in North Carolina include Acronicta albarufa, A. exilis, A. modica (=haesitata), A. immodica (=modica), A. increta, and A. tristis.
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984); Beadle and Leckie (2012)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONA, GBIF, BOLDTechnical Description, Adults: Forbes (1954); Schmidt and Anweiler (2020)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: Acronicta ovata gets its name from the prominently oval basal patch, but is often confused with other members of the Increta Group; usually, it is the combination of several characters that serves to distinguish it (Schmidt and Anweiler, 2020). The ground color of the forewings is usually medium gray with a greenish tint. A patch of rusty or yellow-tan scales usually exists overlaying the reniform spot. The antemedian line is dark, but broken -- not reaching the costa or the inner margin. Both the basal and tornal dashes are present but are thin. The hindwings are fuscous. A. exilis can have similar markings but is much smaller and usually paler. A. albarufa can also have similar forewing markings but the hindwings are pure white rather than fuscous. Other members of the Increta Group differ in one or more of the features described for A. ovata (see Schmidt and Anweiler for more details).
Wingspan: 35 mm (Forbes, 1954); 2.8 - 3.5 cm (Covell, 1984)
Forewing Length: 16.0 mm, males, 16.4 mm, females (Schmidt and Anweiler, 2020)
Adult Structural Features: Apart from size -- which distinguishes A. exilis from the others -- members of the Increta Species Group show essentially no structural differences, including reproductive structures (Schmidt and Anweiler, 2020)
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution:
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
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Our records come from the entire spectrum of oak-containing habitats, including maritime forests, sand ridges, alluvial forests, and high elevation mesic forests
Larval Host Plants: Most larval records come from White Oak, but with several from Red Oak; other oaks, beech, and chestnut have been reported (Wagner et al., 2011). We do not have any specific feeding records in North Carolina. - View
Wikipedia
See also Habitat Account for General Oak-Hickory Forests
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: G5 S4S5
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
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 Photo Gallery for Acronicta ovata - Ovate Dagger

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

Recorded by: David George, Rich Teper on 2024-05-13
Chatham Co.
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Recorded by: Emily Stanley on 2024-04-27
Buncombe Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka, Bo Sullivan and Becky Elkin on 2023-09-15
Macon Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka, Becky Elkin and Bo Sullivan on 2023-08-08
Wilkes Co.
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Recorded by: John Petranka, David George on 2023-08-05
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Cuck Smith on 2023-08-04
Davidson Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Stephen Dunn, Jeff Niznik on 2023-07-31
Macon Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Stephen Dunn, Jeff Niznik on 2023-07-31
Swain Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Stephen Dunn, Jeff Niznik, Rich Teper, Becky Watkins on 2023-07-30
Swain Co.
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Recorded by: David George, Stephen Dunn, Jeff Niznik, Rich Teper, Becky Watkins on 2023-07-29
Swain Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2023-07-27
Buncombe Co.
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Recorded by: Lenny Lampel on 2023-07-26
Mecklenburg Co.
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Recorded by: Jeff Niznik, Stephen Dunn on 2023-07-26
Chatham Co.
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Recorded by: Lenny Lampel on 2023-07-26
Mecklenburg Co.
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Recorded by: Lenny Lampel on 2023-07-26
Mecklenburg Co.
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Recorded by: Chuck Smith on 2023-07-23
Davidson Co.
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Recorded by: K. Bischof on 2023-07-20
Transylvania Co.
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Recorded by: Stephen Dunn on 2023-05-15
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2023-05-15
Wake Co.
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Recorded by: Simpson Eason on 2023-05-01
Durham Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2023-04-20
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: John Petranka on 2022-08-07
Watauga Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2022-08-03
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2022-08-03
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2022-07-30
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Ken Kneidel on 2022-07-27
Mecklenburg Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2022-07-20
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka on 2022-07-03
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2022-07-03
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2022-07-01
Guilford Co.
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