Jewel Caterpillar Moths (Dalceridae)

Jewel caterpillar moths are a family of moths known for their beautiful appearance. They are around 80 species in this family.

List of Moths in this Family

  • Yellow furry-legs moth (Acraga infusa)
  • Jewel Moth (Minacraga argentata)
  • Tangerine furry-legs moth (Acraga moorei)
  • Dalcerina tijucana
  • Oroya aurora
  • Acraga serrata
  • Dalcerides rebella
  • Dalcerides ingenita
  • Dalcera abrasa
  • Zikanyrops sparsa
  • Minacragides arnacis

Description and Identification


The larvae of these moths are visually stunning, with a colorful gelatinous mass surrounding their bodies.


Once mature, they undergo pupation.

Adult Moth

Sexual Dimorphism: Present but not prominent.

Color and Appearance

When the wings are opened, they are generally monochromatic and covered with fuzz. One can still see the colors when they are closed.

Average wingspan: 1-3 cm

Flight pattern: Erratic

Season: Year-round


Female moths lay eggs on the leaves of the host plant.

Quick Facts

Other names Slug caterpillars
Distribution Costa Rica, Mexico, and the Caribbean
Habitat Tropical forests
Lifespan of Adults Not recorded
Host Plants Arabic coffee, loquat
Adult Diet Does not feed

Did You Know

  • American entomologist Harrison Gray Dyar Jr. first described this family in 1898.