Species: Abrostola urentis
Flight Period: May - August
Hosts: Stinging Nettle (Urtica sp.).
Field Notes: Not to be confused with Prominents this moth when viewed laterally has a distinct thoracic hump (red arrow in image to the right). With a short flight window and the fact it's a specialist larvae feeder of stinging meadow dictates you have to survey for it in the right place and at the right time. Abrostola urentis has the largest North American distribution of the four species in the genus Abrostola. The range extends to the Atlantic Coast across the boreal zone of southern Canada and the adjacent United States, occurring as far north as central Alberta and Nova Scotia and as far south as the mountains of eastern North Carolina. Like the Latin genus name for stinging nettle Urtica the species name urentis means "to burn".
Species: Achatia distincta
Flight Period: Late March - Mid June
Hosts: Deciduous trees apple, maple, oak, grape butternut, birch, ash
Field Notes: No wonder this moth is a member of the Spring Quaker family. This is one of the first moths to fly in early spring out at the Meadows. In this respect it is the harbinger of a new year of moth-searching. It seems like any deciduous tree is fair fodder for the caterpillar of this moth. This polyphagous behavior is probably the reason why the moth is one of our most common spring-time species. It will come to lights in small numbers.
Species: Achyra rantalis
Tribes: Tortricini, Eulini,Cnephasiini
Species: Acleris semipurpurana
Flight Period: Mid June - July
Field Notes: WARNING: A highly variable moth so we suggest you use the picture to your right along with all other field guides to make a proper identification of any specimen you think might be this species. Two great online resources are available to help you: Moth photographers Group and BugGuide.
A small observation period exists for the adult moth so if you weren't looking during its 45 day flight period you'll likely miss it - being a mere 8mm in length doesn't help much either. As a matter of factor all the tortix leafrollers rarely exceed 9mm (the width of a pinky nail). It can be found anywhere near oak dominated forests areas out at the Meadows and in your backyard.
Species: Acrolophus popeanella
Species: Acronicta afflicta
Species: Acronicta hasta
Species: Acronicta impleta
Species: Acronicta impressa
Species: Acronicta lobeliae
Flight Period: April - Mid September
Hosts: Deciduous trees including oak, apple, birch, elm, cherry
Field Notes: Not much is known about this boldly marked Acronictid. It does show up at lights occasionally. It's one of those moths that when you see it you say to yourself "I knew you were going to get here eventually". Since it is capable of two broods in a season you just never know when they will appear. The bold apical dashes make this dagger pretty recognizable as opposed to many of its ilk that can be extremely close morphologically.