Moths in North Carolina

North Carolina is home to several colorful and beautiful moths. Some prominent ones are the luna moth, rosy maple moth, and io moth. However, a few, like the carpet and gypsy moths, are unwelcome guests infesting fabrics and hardwood trees, respectively. In the past few years, there were even reports of the venomous hickory moth caterpillar roaming in the backyards of several North Carolina homes, causing itching in humans upon contact.

Large Moths: Luna Moth, Io Moth, Polyphemus Moth, Orange-tipped Oakworm Moth

Common Moths: Gypsy Moth, Hickory Tussock Moth, Polyphemus Moth 

Here is the list of moths found in North Carolina arranged in order of the family they belong to.

Saturniidae Moths

  • Luna Moth (Actias luna)
  • Polyphemus Moth (Antheraea polyphemus)
  • Rosy Maple Moth (Dryocampa rubicunda)
  • Yellowstriped Oakworm (Anisota peigleri)
  • Orange-tipped Oakworm Moth (Anisota senatoria)
  • Io Moth (Automeris io)
  • Tulip-tree Silkmoth (Callosamia angulifera)
  • Imperial Moth (Eacles imperialis)

Geometer Moths

  • Angle-winged Emerald Moth (Chloropteryx tepperaria)
  • Red-fringed Emerald Moth (Nemoria bistriaria)
  • Red-bordered Emerald Moth (Nemoria lixaria)
  • Wavy-lined Emerald Moth (Synchlora aerata)
  • White-striped Black Moth (Trichodezia albovittata)
  • Tissue Moth (Triphosa dubitata)
  • Toothed Brown Carpet Moth (Xanthorhoe lacustrata)
  • Somber Carpet Moth (Disclisioprocta stellata)
  • Unadorned Carpet Moth (Hydrelia inornata)

Hawk Moths

  • Pandorus Sphinx Moth (Eumorpha pandorus)
  • White-lined Sphinx Moth (Hyles lineata)
  • Blinded Sphinx Moth (Paonias excaecatus)
  • Tobacco Hornworm Moth (Manduca sexta)
  • Snowberry Clearwing Moth (Hemaris diffinis)
  • Walnut Sphinx Moth (Amorpha juglandis)
  • Nessus Sphinx Moth (Amphion floridensis)
  • Catalpa Sphinx Moth (Ceratomia catalpae)
  • Waved Sphinx Moth (Ceratomia undulosa)
  • Virginia Creeper Sphinx Moth (Darapsa myron)
  • Snowberry Clearwing Moth (Hemaris diffinis)
  • Hummingbird Clearwing Moth (Hemaris thysbe)
  • White-lined Sphinx Moth (Hemaris thysbe)
  • Great Ash Sphinx Moth (Sphinx chersis)

Prominent Moths

  • Yellow-necked Caterpillar Moth (Datana ministra)

 American Silkworm Moths

  • Spotted Apatelodes (Apatelodes torrefacta)

Erebidae Moths

  • Live Oak Tussock Moth (Orgyia detrita)
  • Gypsy Moth (Lymantria dispar)
  • Hickory Tussock Moth (Lophocampa caryae)
  • Agreeable Tiger Moth (Spilosoma congrua)
  • Giant Leopard Moth (Hypercompe scribonia)
  • Spotted Tussock Moth¬†(Lophocampa maculata)