Moths of North Carolina
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View PDFNoctuidae Members: 22 NC Records

Cirrhophanus triangulifer Grote, 1872 - Goldenrod Stowaway Moth



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Taxonomy
Superfamily: Noctuoidea Family: NoctuidaeSubfamily: AmphipyrinaeTribe: StiriiniP3 Number: 931681.00 MONA Number: 9766.00
Comments: A New World genus of some 13 very similar species found from Mexico through the United States and barely into Canada. One species occurs in North Carolina.
Species Status: Specimens from North Carolina have not been barcoded but those from elsewhere show no evidence of unrecognized species.
Identification
Field Guide Descriptions: Covell (1984); Beadle and Leckie (2012)Online Photographs: MPG, BugGuide, iNaturalist, Google, BAMONATechnical Description, Adults: Forbes (1954); Poole (1995)Technical Description, Immature Stages: Wagner et al. (2011)                                                                                 
Adult Markings: A lovely species, whose pattern of orange or caramel streaks on a golden-yellow ground color distinguishes it from other golden-yellow moths, including Basilodes pepita, Stiria rugirfrons, and Argyrogramma verruca. Sexes are similar.
Adult Structural Features: Genitalia are quite distinct but unlikely needed for identification except in the Southwestern part of the country and into Mexico
Structural photos
Adult ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos of unworn specimens.
Immatures and Development: The caterpillar is brown with a hump at the caudal end and it is unlikely that feeding is restricted to the flowers. The life history was described by Frank Morton Jones (1937) who also elucidated the life history of our pitcher plant moths.
Larvae ID Requirements: Identifiable from good quality photos, especially where associated with known host plants.
Distribution in North Carolina
Distribution: Cirrhophanus occurs from the Mountains to 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: Single brooded, with adults on the wing in August and early September
Habitats and Life History
Habitats: Our records come mainly from wet, open areas, including old fields, powerlines, borrow pits, and lakeshores, all habitats where Bidens are common. We have few, if any, records from Longleaf Pine savannas or wet maritime swales, habitats where Bidens are not considered important species (Weakley, 2015).
Larval Host Plants: Beggar ticks (Bidens sp.), with Midwestern Tickseed-sunflower (Bidens aristosa) commonly reported (Wagner et al., 2011). The range of species is not known, nor are the exact species used in North Carolina.
Observation Methods: Attracted to light but the moth has few records in the state and one wonders if perhaps it is only weakly attracted. Not recorded from nor expected at bait. Although it is not known if adults use nectar as a food source, they may occasionally be found on flowers during the day.
Wikipedia
See also Habitat Account for General Successional Fields and Forblands
Status in North Carolina
Natural Heritage Program Status:
Natural Heritage Program Ranks: G4 [SU]
State Protection: Has no legal protection, although permits are required to collect it on state parks and other public lands.
Comments: For such a distinct moth, we have surprisingly few records, possibly reflecting a low tendency to come to lights. Host plants and habitats do not appear to be limiting factors, but more data are needed -- probably best obtained from larval surveys -- on the distribution, abundance, host plants, and habitats used in North Carolina before its conservation status can be accurately determined.

 Photo Gallery for Cirrhophanus triangulifer - Goldenrod Stowaway Moth

Photos: 13

Recorded by: Vin Stanton on 2019-08-29
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2019-08-25
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2019-08-25
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: Melissa McGaw on 2018-09-18
Orange Co.
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Recorded by: Jim Petranka and Becky Elkin on 2018-09-01
Madison Co.
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Recorded by: K. Bischof on 2017-09-17
McDowell Co.
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Recorded by: K. Bischof on 2017-08-31
McDowell Co.
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Recorded by: Kyle Kittelberger on 2015-09-09
Rockingham Co.
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Recorded by: Rob McHenry on 2009-09-09
Mecklenburg Co.
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Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2009-09-09
Warren Co.
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Recorded by: FKW on 2009-09-09
Gates Co.
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Recorded by: FKW on 2009-09-09
Gates Co.
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Recorded by: Paul Scharf on 2006-09-15
Warren Co.
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