Unusual Prairie Resident

During my trek around Prairie State Park last week, I was checking out some rather unusual flowers (I’ll feature them in an upcoming post) when my eyes focused in on a very bright object just a few feet from me. As I closed in on the object, I realized it was a moth that was clinging, upside-down, to a dead prairie plant stem. I quickly grabbed a shot, before this interesting little guy could make a run for it:

 

Acrea Moth (aka Salt Marsh Moth)

 

 

Once I snapped this image and saw that he was seemingly unphased by my presence, I realized I could probably walk around and grab some more images from other angles. So I slowly moved around to the other side of this moth and grabbed this image:

 

Acrea Moth (aka Salt Marsh Moth)

 

 

I think you would agree this is not only an interesting little creature, but quite handsome! Checking my reference books and online resources, I find it is commonly called an Acrea Moth, also known as a Salt Marsh Moth (Estigmene acrea). I’m pretty sure I’ve seen this moth before, but it’s been a long time (and I certainly did not know it’s identity then).

 

 

 

 

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  • Very cool find, Jim! It looks like it is wearing a rather luxurious robe.

  • Thanks, Julie. Yeh, it does look like a formal robe! :o)