Lepidoptera The Lappet Moth – Lasiocampa Quercifolia

Our last example of the Bombycida is the Lappet (Moth PhotosPlate X, fig. 6), a large moth, the female often measuring considerably over three inches from tip to tip. The wings are of a rich reddish brown, and exhibit a beautiful purplish bloom in a newly emerged insect. Scalloped black lines pass transversely across each wing, and a small black dot lies near the centre of the fore wings.

The caterpillar is very variable in colour, but is usually grey or reddish brown. A deep purple band lies between the second and third segments, and another between the third and fourth. On the twelfth there is a small hump, and a pale stripe, more or less distinct, runs along each side. It feeds on the blackthorn (Prunus spinosa), buckthorn (Rhamnus catharticus), and the white willow (Salix alba).

The moth is not uncommon, and is on the wing in June.