CONTRACTED DATANA

Datana contracta
PROMINENT MOTH FAMILY (Notodontidae)

Description
The Contracted Datana moth is approximately .75 inch long with a wingspan of 1.75 inches. The forewing is tawny brown with dark brown nearly parallel yellow-edged lines. There is a black dot in the light brown orbicular spot. The outer margin is not scalloped. The head is small and tucked down under the hairy chestnut-colored thorax. The hindwings are pale yellowish to pale brown. At rest the wings are held rolled or rooflike. The larva is black and white striped with long whitish hairs. The Prothoracic shield is orange. The larva grows to about 1.75 inches long.

Occurrence
The Contracted Datana is probably common in this area. Adults have been found at Fontenelle Forest in June 2011 and July 2014. Immatures have been found at Fontenelle Forest in August 2008, August 2011 and August 2012. There is one generation a year.

Comments
The larval food plants are hickories and oaks. The caterpillars are gregarious and occur in large clusters on the leaves. The pupa overwinters.

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