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Great Leopard Moth

Great Leopard Moth (Giant Leopard Moth) with a 3-inch wingspan, is white with black open-circular spots on the forewings and a metallic blue abdomen with orange markings. Caterpillars grow to about 2 inches. The caterpillars are fuzzy black caterpillars with the underlying body color of red to orange.

Great Leopard Moth

Great Leopard Moth

Females will emit a pheromone to attract males, which are capable of smelling her fragrance from great distances. After mating, the female will lay her eggs on a wide variety of vegetation including Plantain, Maple, Violet, Willow, Dandelion, and Cherry. They are typically large moths with white forewings heavily spotted with black, and brightly-colored abdomens which are exposed when the moth is threatened.

Life Cycle : Caterpillars can be abundant in the spring time. They can sometimes be seen crossing roads so commonly that motorists notice them. The adult moths are common under lights at night later in the season to mid summer. There may be a second generation later in the year.

Habitat : Caterpillars feed on a variety of broad leaved plants that seem to be mostly weeds.

Facts : This moth can be quite common under lights in some years. The fuzzy caterpillars are often seen migrated across roads and they have black hairs with a pink body underneath. There is confusion with the common name “leopard moth” which is also used for a moth in the carpenter moth family Cossidae.

Great Leopard Moth

Great Leopard Moth CaterPillar

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