Various colors commonly associated with this Moth. Eggs are laid singly or in groups of two or three on leaves of the host plant (Opler et al. Journal of the Lepidopterists' Society 34(1): 61-63. 1979. Immediately after hatching, caterpillars eat their egg shells (Opler et al. Figure 11. Figure 10. For a historical account of the polyphemus moth’s taxonomy see Ferguson (1972) or Tuskes et al. Division of Plant Industry. 1996. The large hind wing eyespots are ringed with prominent yellow, white (partial) and black rings. Male and female polyphemus moth, Antheraea polyphemus (Cramer) antennae. 1996. may be more susceptible to attack by mice in the leaf litter, but Waldbauer (1996) believes that these cocoons gain protection from their random scattering in the litter and that the majority of cocoons that remain suspended in trees are attacked by woodpeckers. Mansingh A, Smallman BN. There is considerable variation in color of the wings even in specimens from the same locality (Holland 1968). Antheraea polyphemus, the Polyphemus moth, is a North American member of the family Saturniidae, the giant silk moths. On the upper surface, there are pink-edged white ante-medial and post-medial lines on the forewin… Adults have vestigial mouthparts and do not feed. They are found from southern Canada down into Mexico and in all of the lower 48 states except for Arizona and Nevada (Tuskes et al. The map below showcases (in blue) the states and territories of North America where the, The BeetleIdentification.org logo, its written content, and photography are unique to this website (unless where indicated) and is protected by all applicable domestic and international intellectual property laws. Protective coloration used for defense by a polyphemus moth. Differentiating between sexes of this species is very easy. 1996). 1944. All have a small eyespot in the center of the forewing, and a very large eyespot in the middle of the hindwing. Photograph by Donald W. Hall, University of Florida. The Wild Silk Moths of North America: The Natural History of the Saturniidae of the United States and Canada. American Entomological Society. Once the caterpillars pupate, the larvae themselves pupate, killing the Polyphemus pupa. Townes HK. Peterson A. 1982. Both induction and termination of diapause also may be influenced by temperature (Mansingh and Smallman 1971). The species was first described by Pieter Cramerin 1776. Their populations are regulated by natural enemies - including insect parasitoids and generalist predators.
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