Catocala of Oregon

Compiled by Bill Oehlke.

Catocala ilia zoe, June 13, 2007, Eugene (Lane County), Oregon,
courtesy of Larry McQueen/Kit Larsen image, confirmed by Larry Gall.

Larry found the following larva and put it in a jar with some oak leaves. It pupated on May 13, 2007 and emerged 31 days later.

Catocala ilia zoe, May 12, 2007, Eugene, Oregon, courtesy of Larry McQueen.

Larry writes, " The caterpillar was found last evening by our dog on the patio. We donít know what plant it associates with, but we have a lot of potted plants. The ventral view captured the caterpillar as it was doing its scare movements of rapid lateral twisting so that it pops up and often lands on its back. It was photographed on a one-inch grid. The insect is basically a green on the blue or gray side."

Catocala ilia zoe, June 13, 2007, Eugene (Lane County), Oregon,
courtesy of Larry McQueen/Kit Larsen image.

The following checklist of Oregon Catocala species is currently speculative. Several species may not be present; there are likely some omissions.

Many thanks to Edna Woodward of Josephine County, Oregon, who has begun (summer 2009) to send me images and sighting data. See the pictoral checklist below. Edna has collected some females of the lesser known species. Hopefully she will have the same great success rearing and photographing them as she has had with Sphingidae and Saturniidae from her area.

On August 20, 2015, Edna sends the following image which we both believe to be Catocala piatix dionyza. If our determinations are correct, I beleive this would be the first report of Catocala piatrix dionyza in Oregon.

Catocala piatrix dionyza, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, Oregon,
August 19, 2015, courtesy of Edna Woodward.

Please report sightings to Bill Oehlke. If you send electronic images, I can probably do the ids.

As of April 4, 2010, this page has been further updated as per research data compiled by Larry Gall.

I would like to continue to refine the listings to county levels so images and data (date, location at least to county level, bait, lights) would be very much appreciated. Please send same to Bill Oehlke. All images that I use on my websites remain the property of respective photographers and images are credited as such.

The Identification Keys Diagram should help you understand the terminology I have used in describing the various species.

Visit Oregon Sphingidae: Hawk Moths/Sphinx Moths.


Little Yellow-Orange Underwings: Wingspans: 35-65mm

Catocala mcdunnoughi: Josephine County, probably limited to southern Oregon, probably mid June to August. Fw: mostly brown, mottled with dark patches. Reniform spot: dark filled while subreniform is closed, almost cream coloured.

Catocala ilia zoe male; 65mm. Fw light grey, considerable brown scaling. Double reniform spot brown center, thinly outlined in black, widely outlined in white, thinly outlined in black. Sbrnfrm spot indented both sides, just above tailed extension, which may/may not be open. Aml black, distinct, pointed, triangular shaped indentation just above im. Pml darker along upper half. southern, western.

Catocala ilia zoe, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, common July 28 - August 9, 2009, Edna Woodward.

Catocala piatrix dionyza; 68-84mm. Fw has light-colored band/bar extending from large, pale brown subreniform spot along am line to costa. There is usually relatively dark area between reniform spot and pm line, wing veins tend to be dark and distinct there. Hw fringe lightly barred, lighter than deeper orange on rest of wing.

Catocala piatrix dionyza, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, August 19, 2015, courtesy of Edna Woodward.

Small-Medium Orange-Salmon Underwings: Wingspans: 65mm and under

verrilliana; Verrill's Underwing; 45-60mm. Closed, subtriangular surnfrm spot large, light in colour. Light patch runs from sbrnfrm diagonally to costa. Dark area on basal side of aml, light patches between pml and sbtrmnl line. Note orange hw fringe. July-September, oaks.

Catocala verrilliana, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, August 9, 2009; September 11, 2013, Edna Woodward.
Catocala verrilliana, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, common on August 20, 2009, Edna Woodward.

Catocala ophelia; Ophelia Underwing: 52mm: Fw dark grey, am/pm lines relatively smooth except for two jagged spikes in pm near apex. Considerable brown shading outside sbtrmnl line. Hw pink-deep red, black median band constricted in center, ending before im. Black submarginal border is quite broad near apex. White fringe heavily checked. Southwestern

Catocala ophelia, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, September 7, 2009, Edna Woodward.
Catocala ophelia, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, September 12, 2013, Edna Woodward.

** 8857 Catocala ultronia; Ultronia Underwing; 50-63mm; Typically gray-brown, with distinct, very dark inner margin; characteristic light brown patch, underscored by very dark arc, near wingtip. Specimens vary. Underwings can be yellow, orange, salmon.

** 8857 Catocala ultronia form lucinda; Ultronia Underwing, wingspan: 50-63mm. In form lucinda most of forewing is bright grey. On all forms there is extensive orange-salmon colouration on hw ventral surface; dark discal lunule. unconfirmed, possibly in eastern Oregon

Catocala ultronia, form nigrescens, Ultronia Underwing, 50-63mm. Melanic form nigrescens: dorsal fw very dark. Darker subapical arc, basal dash, dash near anal angle still visible. Dark basal hairs on hw. Harold J. Vermes slide, permission from son.

Catocala ultronia form celia. In form celia there is wide, light grey band separating dark region along inner margin and dark patch near apex. Fw ventral surface of all forms has generous suffusion of orange-salmon scales in lower half of median area.

faustina; 58 mm: Fw markings relatively weak on almost uniform drab grey-brown ground colour. Two middle "teeth" in fw pm line relatively short. Hw inner band narrow, truncated well before im. Black extenssions into white hw fringe continue as thin lines along veins. June until October; willows

faustina cleopatra; 58 mm; Head, thorax dark bluish grey; abdomen brownish grey. Primaries dark bluish grey. Transverse lines, rnfrm, sbrnform indistinct with some yellowish brown shading. Orange to pinkish hw, relatively narrow bands, fringe (unbroken) white, grey near abdomen.

Catocala faustina cleopatra, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, September 11, 2013, Edna Woodward.

californica; 65mm. Fws dark, gritty. Markings indistinct. Dark, large rnfrm spot; am, pm lines indistinct. Sbtrmnl line inwardly lined with light scales. Hw fringe white, checked halfway with black on veins. Some orange bleeding at apex. Black median band ends well before im. June until August; willow or walnut??

Catocala hermia; Hermia Underwing: 58-68mm; pinkish: Fw uniform, grey-brown/clay coloured, thin, contrasting medial lines. Distinct large double rnfrm spot. Large concolourous sbrnfrm spot usually open. Hw pinkish red, relatively even, narrow black bands. Inner band ends before im. Fringe white, checked, "bleeding" along outer band, near apex.

Catocala hermia, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, September 8, 2009, courtesy of Edna Woodward.

Medium Orange-Salmon Underwings: Wingspans: 65mm - 75mm

irene; Irene's Underwing; 65-75mm. Fw grey brown, darker upper half basal area, around reniform spot, indistinct arc near apex. Sbrnfrm spot lighter, open into pm area. Hw median black band pointed before reaching im. Outer band scalloped near a. a.. Probably southeast; poplars, willows

faustina allusa. White interior outline of terminal line is typical of this species and two jagged upper "teeth" of postmedial line are typical of most poplar feeders. There is also a dark bar a few mm up from inner margin of the forewing. Subreniform spot and area interior and above tend to be lighter. willows and poplars

** 8821 semirelicta; Semirelict Underwing; 65-75mm FW whitish with dark lines, shadings. Diffuse dark bar runs from center of basal area to om a few mm above aa. Note regular dentation of st line. Hw inner black bar usually terminates well before im. Form "atala" has fw uniformly grey. Unijuga usually larger, has less contrasting black lines. Inner black bar on unijuga usually reaches im. June-October; poplars, willows

Catocala semirelicta, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, September 15, 2009, courtesy of Edna Woodward.
Catocala semirelicta, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, August 16, 2015, courtesy of Edna Woodward.

#8817 briseis; Briseis Underwing; 60-70mm: Fws mottled dark-grey-brown with some lighter areas between pm/sbtrmnl lines, at base of am/pm lines along im, over sbrnfrm spot running diagonally toward costa. Pm lines lack greatly elongated, sharply pointed "teeth". Hw fringe white, unbroken; inner black band (fairly even) reaches im. July-September, probably northern only; willows, poplars

Catocala grotiana; Grote's Underwing: 70-80mm: White outlines outside pm, inside sbtrmnl lines distinctive. Hw inner black band even, relatively thin, terminates well before inner margin. Fringe heavily checked, charcoal grey along inner margin. Hws: orange, red. August- September; willows

Large Orange-Salmon Underwings: Wingspans: 75mm and larger

** 8801 Catocala ilia; Ilia; wingspan: 65-82mm. Different forms, most white area in, around rnfrm spot. Diffuse dark arc running from spot to just below apex. Sbrnfrm spot squarish, concave inner, outer edges, elongated constriction connecting it to pml. White dots near fw om in character with overall "contrasting" appearance.

** 8801 Catocala ilia; Ilia; form conspicua

Entire reniform spot heavily suffused with white scaling on otherwise darker ground colour. Hence form name "conspicua".

Tim Dyson image.

** 8801 Catocala ilia; Ilia; form satanas

Melanic form: entire forewing, including reniform spot very dark. Hence form name "satanas".

Dark basal streak still evident.

Tim Dyson image.

** 8801 Catocala ilia; Ilia; form normani

Semi-melanic form: entire forewing, excluding reniform spot, relatively dark. Brownish, kidney-shaped center of reniform spot outlined in white. Basal streak, subapical arc still visible. July-September, probably southeast; oaks. Tim Dyson image.

aholibah; 80-90mm: Fw: mix of grey, brown, with preponderance of brown in sbtrmnl area. Double reniform spot has diffuse brown outline of inner oval. Sbrnfrm spot: small, distinctly outlined in black, light coloured, does not connect to pm line. Upper two teeth of pm line: elongate, followed by relatively smooth line til next tooth below sbrnfrm spot. Hindwing salmon, pinkish.

Catocala aholibah, July 18, 2009, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, courtesy of Edna Woodward.
Catocala aholibah female, October 4, 2009, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, courtesy of Edna Woodward.
Catocala aholibah female, September 11, 2013, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, courtesy of Edna Woodward.

Catocala junctura; Joined Underwing; 67-85mm. Fw: usually dark brownish-gray to evenly powdered blue-grey w/o significant markings. Doubled reniform spot often obscure. Thin, slightly darker am, pm lines run from costa to im, not widely spaced at im. Hw salmon/ orange-pink, narrow inner black band turns in sharply, does not meet dark-haired im. May-October; poplars, willows

** 8805 unijuga; Once-married; 70-90mm. Fairly wide black inner band (almost reaching inner margin) in hw; very distinctive patterning in fw. Note very white fringe on both forewings & hindwings. June to october, willows

Catocala unijuga, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, July 24 - August 9, 2009, Edna Woodward.

** 8805 unijuga; Once-married; 70-90mm. Form agatha has much darker, evenly grey forewing. Hindwings have some darker hairs in basal area. Note very white fringe on both forewings & hindwings. June to october, willows

Large Black Underwings (Banded): Wingspans: 70-80mm

** 8803 Catocala relicta ; Forsaken, White, Relict; 70-80mm: Considerable variation with regard to black/white concentrations on fws. Typical specimens have basal, sbtrmnl areas with blackish scales. Black hws, brilliant white inner band, white fringe. June-October, poplars, willows

** 8803 Catocala relicta ; Forsaken, White, Relict; 70-80mm: Form clara: basal and sbtrmnl areas predominantly white. Typical specimens have basal, sbtrmnl areas with blackish scales. Black hws, brilliant white inner band, white fringe. June- October; poplars, willows

Catocala relicta, Hat Rock State Park, Umatilla, Umatilla County, August 1, 2009, courtesy of Mike Denny
Catocala relicta, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, September 14, 2009, Edna Woodward.

** 8803 Catocala relicta ; Forsaken, White, Relict; 70-80mm: Form phrynia: evenly dusted with grey over entire forewing. Typical specimens have basal and sbtrmnl areas with blackish scales. Black hws, with brilliant even white inner band and white fringe, are distinctive. June-October; poplars, willows

Catocala relicta form phrynia, Wolf Creek, Josephine County, August 22, 2009, Edna Woodward.

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Visit "Systematics of moths in the genus Catocala (Lepidoptera, Erebidae) IV.
Nomenclatorial stabilization of the Nearctic fauna, with a revised synonymic check list";
ZooKeys 39: 37Ė83 (2010) by Lawrence F. Gall, David C. Hawks

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