Moths of North Carolina
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3 NC Records

Lithophane georgii Grote, 1875 - No Common Name


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Taxonomy
Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: NoctuidaeSubfamily: NoctuinaeTribe: XyleniniP3 Number: 932573.00 MONA Number: 9913.00
Comments: One of 51 species in this genus that occur in North America (Lafontaine and Schmidt, 2010, 2015), 25 of which have been recorded in North Carolina.
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONA, GBIFTechnical Description, Adults: Forbes (1954)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Forbes (1954); Wagner et al. (2011)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: A medium-large Pinion. The ground color of the forewings is a pale, slightly bluish gray, and contrasting with the fuscous veins. A long thin black basal dash is present but both the antemedian and postmedian lines are obsolete. The subterminal is conspicuous, however, and consists of a series of dark wedges located between the veins. Both the orbicular and reniform are pale gray with a lighter ring, outwardly edged with black. The hindwings are fuscous brown (Forbes, 1954).
Wingspan: 46-48 mm (Forbes, 1954)
Adult Structural Features: As is true for other members of Forbes's Lithophane Group III, there are no abdominal tufts and the thoracic tuft is inconspicuous in this species. Male genitalia lack a corona and cucullus and there is no distinct digitus; an illustration of the valves of georgii is given in Forbes.
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Immatures and Development: Larvae are pale, blue-green with a conspicuous yellow spiracular stripe and white dorsal stripe. Narrower white lateral stripes are also present, as are numerous small pale spots (see Wagner et al., 2011, for a detailed description and illustrations). Mature caterpillars are found in June and July.
Larvae ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos, especially where associated with known host plants.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Restricted to high elevations in the Mountains, with records coming from sites above 5,250 ft (1600 m) (Wagner et al., 2011).
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)

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Flight Comments: Univoltine, with adults recorded beginning in early October and overwintering to the following spring
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Our few records all come from Northern Hardwoods.
Larval Host Plants: Polyphagous, feeding on many hardwood trees and shrubs. In North Carolina, Wagner et al. (2011) list the following as food plants: Blueberry, Blackberry, Currant, and Pin Cherry.
Observation Methods: Like most species of Lithophane, L. georgii probably comes better to bait than to lights. Larvae can be found by beating woody broad-leafed plants, sometimes in abundance (Wagner et al., 2011).
Wikipedia
See also Habitat Account for General High Elevation Forests
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status: SR
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: G5 S1S2
State Protection: Listed as Significantly Rare by the Natural Heritage Program. That designation, however, does not confer any legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
Comments: The population of this species in the Southern Applachians is strongly disjunct from its main range in Canada and the western Mountains; the next nearest populations appear to be located in northern New York and Pennsylvania (Forbes, 1954; Wagner et al., 2011). We have only a few records for adults, although Wagner reports finding larvae in abundance at one site in Swain County. As with other disjunct species associated with high elevation habitats in the Southern Applachians, this species is probably a Pleistocene relict and its range in our mountains. As a cold climate species, it is likely to be strongly reduced due to the effects of climate change. Once gone, this species will probably never return to this state, short of another period of glaciation.