Neha Patil

Catocala cara

Updated on
Share on FacebookTweet on TwitterShare on LinkedIn
Kingdom  Animalia
Class  Insecta
Scientific name  Catocala cara
Rank  Species
Subphylum  Hexapoda
Genus  Catocala
Phylum  Arthropoda
Order  Butterflies and moths
Catocala cara httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommonsthu
Family  Erebidae (but see text)
Tribe  Catocalini (but see text)
Similar  Catocala, Catocala amatrix, Catocala concumbens, Catocala blandula, Catocala subnata

Catocala cara, the darling underwing, is an Erebidae species. The species can be found in the United States east of the Rocky Mountains; it occurs west at least to Oklahoma and north at least to Illinois. It also ranges into southern Canada, but only barely so.


Description and ecology

The wingspan is 70–85 mm. The forewings are dark purplish brown above, and light cream below. The hindwings have a deep scarlet-pink ground color with a pattern of two clean concentric blackish bands per wing, one through the midwing and one along the pale outer margin. The hindwing base is heavily covered in dark hairs; at a casual glance it may thus appear as if at the center of the dark bands there is a black spot or streak. As in many relatives, the foreleg tibia of this species possess no spines, while the tarsi carry three rows of spines.

The adult moths flies from June to October depending on the location. The caterpillars feed on Populus (poplar and cottonwood) and Salix (willow) species, especially Black willow (S. nigra).


This moth is placed in the subfamily Catocalinae, either of the owlet moth family, Noctuidae, or – if the Noctuidae are circumscribed more strictly – of family Erebidae. Within the Catocalinae, it belongs to tribe Catocalini and – if the Noctuidae are circumscribed widely – subtribe Catocalina.

The former subspecies C. c. carissima, which occurs to the south of the darling underwing, is now again considered to be a valid species Catocala carissima (Carissima underwing); this also includes the supposed species C. silvia, which actually is merely a form with no formal taxonomic standing.


Catocala cara Wikipedia

Similar Topics
Catocala amatrix
Catocala blandula