Lepidoptera The Brown Tail Moth – Porthesia Chrysorrhœa
The family contains two moths-the Brown Tail and the Yellow Tail-that are very similar in appearance and habits. Both have white wings, and their bodies also are white with the exception of the tuft of coloured hair at the tip of the abdomen, which gives the names to the species. Their larva may both be found feeding on the same trees (whitethorn), and both change to a brown hairy chrysalis within a loose cocoon among the leaves.
The larva of Chrysorrhœa is black, with four rows of little wart-like projections on each side, from which proceed little tufts of hairs. These hairs are reddish with the exception of one row on each side, which is white. The tenth and eleventh segments have each a scarlet tubercle, and there are also other small spots of the same colour on some of the front segments.
The larva feeds on the blackthorn in addition to the tree mentioned above, and is full grown in June. The moth flies in August.