Hodges # 6665
Caterpillar foods: many woody shrubs & trees, including apple, ash, basswood, birch, cherry, elm, hazel, hickory, maple, oak, poplar, rose, willow (Wagner)
The adults fly very late in the fall – I’ve always seen them near the end of October. I’ve seen them flying late in the day, with their wings catching the sunlight; and they’ve come at night, to my lighted sheet. The ones I’ve seen are all males – females are wingless, and wait on tree trunks for the males to come to them.
According to both Wagner and Covell, numbers of this species vary a lot from year to year. Usually their numbers are low, but once in a while their populations irrupt and can cause defoliation of trees. One warm night near the end of October 2013 I saw 44 individuals at my lights – that’s the largest number I’ve seen at one time.
Wing color and patterns vary quite a lot from one individual to another.
I’ve found the caterpillars a few times, but have never successfully raised one.
5/31/2009 on a young Burr Oak
6/8/2009 Caterpillar with leaf damage on Burr Oak
10/5/2013 First of the season