Moths in Wisconsin

Wisconsin has several moths, some harmlessly sitting in the garden enhancing its beauty while a few causing severe menace. Species of the Saturniidae family, like the luna, buck, or Polyphemus moths, have a strikingly appealing appearance. The giant-sized cecropia moth, having pretty crescent-shaped spots at the center, is the biggest moth in Wisconsin.  One could catch a glimpse of the large brownish Promethea moths with notable eyespots between May and July.

On the flip side, gypsy moths thriving in Wisconsin alongside several other northeastern states of the U.S., defoliating several hardwood trees like birch, oak, and poplar.

Common Moths: Cecropia Moth, Gypsy Moth, Hummingbird Clearwing Moth

Large Moths: Cecropia Moth, White-lined Sphinx Moth,Polyphemus Moth

Here is the list of moths found in Wisconsin arranged in order of the family they belong.

Hawk Moths

  • Hummingbird Clearwing Moth (Hemaris thysbe)
  • Snowberry Clearwing Moth (Hemaris diffinis)
  • White-lined Sphinx Moth (Hyles lineate)
  • Nessus Sphinx Moth (Amphion floridensis)
  • Slender Clearwing Moth (Hemaris gracilis)
  • Hummingbird Hawk-moth (Macroglossum stellatarum)

Erebidae Moths

  • Abbreviated Underwing Moth (Catocala abbreviatella)
  • Three-staff Underwing Moth (Catocala amestris)
  • Semirelict Underwing Moth (Catocala semirelicta)
  • Whitney’s Underwing Moth (Catocala whitneyi)
  • Unexpected Cycnia Moth (Cycnia inopinatus)
  • White-marked Tussock Moth (Orgyia leucostigma)
  • Gypsy Moth (Lymantria dispar)

Saturniidae Moths

  • Buck Moth (Hemileuca maia)
  • Cecropia Moth (Hyalophora cecropia)
  • Promethea Silkmoth (Callosamia promethea)
  • Polyphemus Moth (Antheraea Polyphemus)

Owlet Moths

Tiger Moths

  • Phyrilla Tiger Moth (Grammia phyllira)