Moths of North Carolina
Scientific Name:
Common Name:
Family (Alpha):
« »
View PDFErebidae Members: 39 NC Records

Catocala piatrix Grote, 1864 - Penitent Underwing


Taxonomy
Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: ErebidaeSubfamily: ErebinaeTribe: CatocaliniP3 Number: 930762.00 MONA Number: 8771.00
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. Piatrix was included by Barnes and McDunnough (1918) in their Group II (also adopted by Forbes, 1954), which contains just this one species.
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984); Beadle and Leckie (2012)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, BOLDTechnical Description, Adults: Forbes (1954); Sargent (1976)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Forbes (1954); Wagner et al. (2011)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: A large brownish-gray Underwing with boldly banded orange and black hindwings. The forewings are mottled with dark and pale gray. A contrasting pale band extends from the costa to the subreniform, separating two patches of dark gray located in the upper basal area and the area surrounding the reniform. The subterminal area is a medium gray but is crossed by a dark gray apical dash. The hindwings are broadly banded with orange and black. Catocala innubens has similar hindwings but has a very different forewing color and/or pattern.
Wingspan: 70-80 mm (Sargent, 1976)
Adult Structural Features: Male valves are somewhat asymmetrical, especially their apices (Forbes, 1954 -- features of Group II)
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Probably occurs throughout the Piedmont and Mountains but may be less widespread in the Coastal Plain
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
Flight Comments: Univoltine, flying in North Carolina from late July to early October
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: The majority of our records come from wet to mesic hardwood forests; only a couple of records come from dry slopes but in areas adjoining wet or mesic stands. Most records come from areas of fairly rich soils but at least one record from Gates County came from a blackwater floodplain.
Larval Host Plants: Stenophagous, feeding mainly on Black Walnut, Butternut, Pecan, Shagbark Hickory and other hickories (Forbes, 1954; Wagner et al., 2011)
Observation Methods: Comes to light to some extent and also to bait
Wikipedia
See also Habitat Account for Rich Wet-Mesic Hardwood 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.
Comments: We currently have only a few records for this species but it may be undersampled, requiring more bait surveys in particular to determine its actual frequency and abundance. This species is a moderate habitat specialist, but its habitats themselves are still fairly common. While it appears to be secure within the state more information is needed to accurately assess its status.

 Photo Gallery for Catocala piatrix - Penitent Underwing

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

Recorded by: tom ward on 2021-10-10
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: tom ward on 2021-10-03
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Vin Stanton on 2021-09-22
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Vin Stanton on 2021-09-22
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2021-09-18
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Dean Furbish on 2021-09-13
Wake Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: David George, L. M. Carlson on 2021-09-10
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: tom ward on 2021-09-08
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Ken Kneidel on 2021-08-04
Mecklenburg Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Lior Carlson, Richard Teper on 2021-08-03
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Vin Stanton on 2019-09-28
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2019-09-23
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2019-09-20
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Simpson Eason on 2019-09-14
Durham Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2019-09-10
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2019-09-01
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2019-09-01
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Steve Hall on 2019-08-29
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Simpson Eason on 2019-08-12
Durham Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: L. M. Carlson on 2019-08-08
Orange Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2018-10-10
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Hunter Phillips on 2018-09-15
Onslow Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Hunter Phillips on 2018-09-15
Onslow Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: David L. Heavner on 2018-09-10
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: David L. Heavner on 2018-09-10
Buncombe Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2018-09-10
Madison Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2018-08-29
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Gary Maness on 2018-08-29
Guilford Co.
Comment:
Recorded by: Melissa McGaw and Steve Hall on 2017-08-17
Orange Co.
Comment: Photographed at bait by Melissa McGaw
Recorded by: Stephen Hall on 2016-09-04
Orange Co.
Comment: Wingspan = 8.2 cm; forewing length = 4.0 cm