Currently viewing the category: "Tussock Moths"

Subject:  Florida moth/butterfly
Geographic location of the bug:  Vero beach Florida
Date: 12/19/2017
Time: 06:40 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I cannot seem to find the identity of these two. Picture was taken during mating, then aftwr they separated.
How you want your letter signed:  Rob Kellar

Mating Tussock Moths

Dear Rob,
We are currently going through old requests that arrived while our editorial staff was away for the holidays, and we are attempting to catch up on some old identifications and posting those that will be of greatest interest to our readership.  These are mating Tussock Moths in the genus
Orgyia.  The image with the single individual depicts the male, the gender that is capable of flight and that has very plumose antennae to better enable him to locate the flightless, sedentary female that emerges from pupation and releases pheromones.  Based on this BugGuide image, we believe you might have encountered White Marked Tussock Moths, Orgyia leucostigma.  Interestingly, the wings on the female in your image are more developed than the usual vestigial wings we have seen pictured in other examples posted on the internet.

Male Tussock Moth

Subject:  Unknown
Geographic location of the bug:  Buenos Aires, Argentina
Date: 02/27/2018
Time: 07:27 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hello, I have found two of these cute  wingless bee like fuzzy bugs. It’s beige with lighter whiteish stripes and the end of its body is white. It has rabbit ear “antennas” or kind of… it only has 6 or 8 legs near its head, doesn’t move much when touched and the size is about  1/ 1.5 cm in length. I can’t really distinguish a mouth or anything else, it’s legs are skinny with no fuzziness as the rest of the body.
How you want your letter signed:  Macy

Female Vapourer Moth

Dear Macy,
This looks to us like a flightless female Vapourer Moth in the genus
Orgyia.  Though it is from England, there is a nice image on Wildlife Insight for comparison and here is a BugGuide image as well.  We have a posting of a caterpillar from the genus Orgyia from Argentina in our archives.

Subject:  Who’s nest is that
Geographic location of the bug:  UK, Houghton Regis
Date: 11/11/2017
Time: 02:00 PM EDT
Found this nest in my garden and wonder who’s it can be
How you want your letter signed:  Delfina

Vapourer Eggs

Dear Delfina,
These are the eggs of The Vapourer,
Orgyia antiqua, a species we found on Nature Spot where it states:  “The female lays her eggs on what remains of the pupal cocoon, which then overwinter. When hatched, the very hairy caterpillars feed on a range of deciduous trees and shrubs.”

Subject:  Freaky egg laying, giant fuzzy flea?! 🙂
Geographic location of the bug:  Union County, Ohio
Date: 10/01/2017
Time: 04:29 PM EDT
This critter is doing its thing on my chicken coop door. It looks like a big, fuzzy flea or tick. It’s about 1/2-3/4 inch long. It’s laying a gob of eggs on a sort of cocoon. I poked the cocoon and it moved, and the critter moved too. WEIRD! What is it!?
How you want your letter signed:  Curious in Ohio

White-Marked Tussock Moth lays Eggs

Dear Curious in Ohio,
There are many flightless female moths, and we quickly identified your White-Marked Tussock Moth laying eggs thanks to this BugGuide image.  According to BugGuide:  “Flightless females lay a froth-covered mass of up to 300 eggs after mating.”

Subject: Moth or Not Moth?
Location: Holly Springs, MS.
October 1, 2016 4:45 am
As I was a “bug queen” for a day a few years ago on WTB, I thought I would ask about something I’ve never seen before.
The enclosed pics are of the siding in my house. There appears to be a “nest” to the left of a white moth. However, I did NOT see any wings on this “moth.” The nest had soft dried grass to the left, but the white part to the right was hard like plastic.
Would appreciate some bug love with an answer as to what my new critter friend is.
Thanks for all the wonderful info you give to your fans!
Signature: Stephanie Berry

Whitemarked Tussock Moth with Eggs

Whitemarked Tussock Moth with Eggs

Dear Stephanie,
There are several groups of moths in which the female is flightless, and we believe your moth is a Whitemarked Tussock Moth,
Orgyia leucostigma, or a closely related member of the genus.  Tussock Moths are also known as Vaporer Moths.  Here is an image from BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Flightless females lay a froth-covered mass of up to 300 eggs after mating.”

Whitemarked Tussock Moth with Eggs

Whitemarked Tussock Moth with Eggs

Thank you so much for the info!!  I never knew there were flightless  moths!
You do an amazing job for your readers!!!
Much love,
Steph aka Ellie Mae

Subject: Bug Identification
Location: Medowie, Australia NSW
February 17, 2015 1:28 pm
I was hoping to have this bug identified. It is in a tree in our yard in Medowie NSW. No-one seems to know what it is. There is a circular spider web right next to the bug & cocoon of eggs.
Signature: Toni Alley

Tussock Moth with Eggs

Tussock Moth with Eggs

Dear Toni,
This is a flightless female Tussock Moth with her eggs, probably
Orgyia australis.

Thank you for letting me know 🙂
Toni Alley