I learned a new moth

So this morning I was doing a little project in the garden, cleaning up a bed and moving some pots into it (trying to get my driveway cleared before the end of the summer). I needed to get this project done before 10 AM or so or I'd be cooked by the sun -- this bed is shaded until then.

As I was cooling off after the work was done I was standing in the shade watching the bees on the Agastache foeniculum, and noticed this moth that I didn't recognize.


As I snapped each photo, it would fly away at the sound of the shutter.

In that brief instant that the viewfinder gets obscured, it would disappear, leaving me to wonder if I had actually captured its image or not.

I had to check after every shot.  Once I just pressed the shutter release without looking through the camera, and let me tell you: that moth is fast!

I noticed two of these on the Agastache, then when I walked to another part of the yard I noticed one on the bee balm too:

I can't be certain that this wasn't one of the same ones I saw across the garden, but I wouldn't be surprised if there were three or more here at once.

After looking it up, I found out that this is the Eight-spotted Forester moth. Its larva feed on grape leaves, which there is no shortage of in the common ground behind my yard. (I'm going to have to tackle that project later this year). Virginia creeper is another caterpillar food source for this species, and that's another vine that is common around here. Surely I've seen these moths before? I just don't remember them.

I'm glad I was able to see this moth this morning -- it's always exciting to see a "new" butterfly or moth!


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Barbie  – (July 5, 2011 at 4:00 PM)  

I love your bug posts - some of them look like aliens! I also love posting interesting bugs too. Did you find out what this moth is? It look familiar!

Alan  – (July 5, 2011 at 10:13 PM)  

Yep. It's an Eight-spotted Forester moth.

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