Home / Erebidae Moths / Nine Spotted Moth (Amata phegea)

Nine Spotted Moth (Amata phegea)

The nine spotted moth is an Erebidae moth, first described by famed Swedish zoologist Carl Linnaeus in the 10th edition of Systema Naturae.

Nine Spotted Moth


Scientific Classification

  • Family: Erebidae
  • Genus: Amata
  • Scientific Name: Amata phegea

Description and Identification


They are gray-black and covered with thick, dark-brown bristles throughout their bodies. Larvae have reddish-brown heads and can reach up to 5 cm.

Nine Spotted Moth Caterpillar



Pupation takes place on the ground in silk cocoons.

Nine Spotted Moth Pupa


Adult Moth

Sexual Dimorphism: Present. Males have thicker antennae and are generally smaller.

Color and Appearance

Their bodies are long, with a yellow spot on the 2nd segment and a yellow ring on the 6th segment of the abdomen.

Forewings: When the wings are open, theyare blueish black or greenish-black with six white spots and a metallic sheen. When the wings are closed, the colors and patterns remain visible.

Hindwings: When the wings are open, they are similar to the forewings in colors, with fewer spots. When the wings are closed, they become hidden.

Average wingspan: 35–40 mm

Flight pattern: Consistent

Season: Late May to August

Amata phegea



Eggs are generally laid on a variety of herbs.

Quick Facts

Other NamesYellow belted burnet
DistributionSouthern Europe, but sometimes spotted in north Germany
HabitatDry areas andopen forests containing shrubs and trees
Lifespan of Adults1 week
Host PlantsHerbaceous plants like bedstraws, dandelions, docks, fleaworts, and grasses
Adult DietNot recorded

Did You Know

  • The nine spotted moth mimics the appearance of Zygaena ephialtes, which is inedible for birds. This is an attempt of the species to avoid predation.
Yellow Belted Burnet


Nine Spotted Moth Picture


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