Saturniidae Moth (Saturniidae)

Saturniid moths are a family of moths consisting of 2300 species. They are recognizable from their large wings, which sometimes have eyespots.

List of Moths in this Family

Description and Identification

Caterpillar

The larvae are cylindrical and stout. By the final instar, they are 5-10 cm long. Their coloration varies but generally consists of countershading. There are urticating hairs all over their bodies.

Pupa

Pupation occurs inside a cocoon made of leaves held together by silk. During this stage, the digestive system is replaced with a reproductive system.

Adult Moth

Sexual Dimorphism: Present. Most males have broader antennae than their female counterparts.

Color and Appearance

When opened, the forewings and hindwings resemble a single wing surface. There are eyespots present on the wings of several species. Even when the wings are closed, the colors and patterns remain visible.

Average wingspan: 2.5–15 cm

Flight pattern: Erratic

Season: Spring-Summer

Egg

The eggs are whitish, translucent, smooth, round, and flattened. Around 200 eggs are laid on the leaves of the host plant.

Quick Facts

Distribution New World
Habitat Tropical or subtropical regions
Lifespan of Adults 4 and 21 days
Predators Birds and lizards
Host Plants Ash, beech, lilac, persimmon, sumac, and sweet gum
Adult Diet Does not feed

Did You Know

  • Some of the largest moths today belong to this family, including the Atlas moth.