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Cecropia Moth
(Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources, Forestry Archive,
Common Name: Cecropia Moth

Order: Lepidoptera

Family: Saturniidae

Pest Status: Cecropia moth caterpillars are very large, but seldom cause significant damage to trees because they occur singly rather than in large groups.

Appearance: Cecropia moths are conspicuous due to their large size (wings may span 4-6 inches). The body is red with a white collar and white bands on the abdomen. The wings are dark brown with white, hair-like scales giving a frosted appearance.

Life Cycle: Females lay their eggs on the leaves of host plants. When the eggs hatch, the larvae emerge and eat their eggshells. The newly hatched caterpillars molt four times before they spin cocoons of brown silk. They overwinter as pupae and emerge in the spring.

Where to Collect: Cecropia moths are especially prevalent in wooded areas, but can usually be seen flying at night.