Metria amella (Guenne, 1852)
Live Oak Metria Moth
NatureServe Global Rank: G5
Virginia State Rank: S1S2
VA DGIF Tier: None
Federal Legal Status: None
Virginia Legal Status: None
Description: The Live Oak Metria Moth is a medium sized species at approximately 40mm. It is a variably mottled species, with a mix of black, brown, tan, white and sometimes even a greenish color. The base of the front wing is darker brown and black. There is a zigzagged am line outside of this dark patch that is usually edged with white. Immediately outside the white there is a smudged black line, variable in width. Outside of this line is a larger area of lighter tan to almost white coloration that contains a tan or brownish tan reniform spot, often outlined in white. This patch grades into a darker gray before reaching the pm line which is slightly zigzagged and contains three large scallops. The rest of the distance to the outside of the wing is a mix of gray and tan. There is a darker form in which the large tan area in between the am and pm lines is mostly blackish, especially near the trailing edge of the wing. The reniform spot remains lighter tan. The hind wings are gray with a few ripple-like markings toward the outer half. The larva has a diagnostic bi-lobed head that is pale yellow in coloration, with blackish marbling.
Similar species: Although the Live Oak Metria Moth has similar coloration to quite a few other moth species, the orientation and style of the lines/markings separate it from other species in Virginia.
North American Range: The Live Oak Moth is a southeastern species, mainly existing on the coastal plain from southeastern Virginia to Florida, and west to Texas. This species has been documented in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
VA Observations by Locality: Virginia Beach, City of
Flight season and broods: There are multiple broods, especially in the south. The flight season is not specifically documented.
Habitat and Food Plants: The habitat has not been specifically documented, although this species may occur wherever its host is found. Its larvae have been found hosting on Live Oak and Turkey Oak.
Behavior and Ecology: Presently unknown
Population trend and potential threats: Population status and potential threats are unknown.
Management practices: Populations should be monitored and habitats preserved.
References: Moth Photographers Group at the Mississippi Entomological Museum at Mississippi State University. Web application at: http://mothphotographersgroup.msstate.edu/large_map.php?hodges=8666 Accessed: 17Apr2013
NatureServe. 2011. NatureServe Explorer: An online encyclopedia of life [web application]. Version 7.1. NatureServe, Arlington, Virginia. Available http://www.natureserve.org/explorer. (Accessed: September 10, 2012).
Wagner, D. L., D.F. Schweitzer, J.B. Sullivan, and R.C. Reardon. 2011. Owlet Caterpillars of Eastern North America. Princeton University Press, Princeton, NJ. 576pp.
Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation, Natural Heritage Program, 600 E. Main St., 24th Floor, Richmond, VA 23219
This atlas was compiled
by the VA Natural Heritage Program with funds provided by the VA Dept. of Game and Inland Fisheries through a state wildlife grant
from U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Last Modified: Tuesday, 24 January 2017, 10:12:03 PM