Winter pyraloidean? - Maine

Mike Quinn entomike at
Wed Dec 29 13:57:02 EST 2010

Boy, for a relatively inactive list, there sure are a lot of lurkers here...

Mea culpa already! Remind me to never post an ID query here again.

This is all my fault because I posted the query, then figured out what it
was and updated the on-line image to reflect the correct ID. After getting a
number of replies, both on and off-list, I posted a thank you note to the
list saying that the bug had been ID'ed. My error here was in not stating
what the ID was (even though the updated link showed what it was). This also
caused confusion as some people thought, "why the heck is he asking what it
is when it's clearly correctly ID'ed?" Someone else subscribed to the
lepidopteran listserv even asked what a pyraloidean was. There was also a
question as to what the heck this thing was doing flying around in the

I apparently inadvertently caused mass confusion.

The moth, not a butterfly, was photographed by a Texas friend in Maine who
isn't familiar with the local fauna. He sent me the photo, shot indoors,
thinking I would know what this strange "crescent" (nymphalid) was. I only
knew it was a member of the superfamily Pyraloidea so I posted the photo to
BugGuide and then sent a short (apparently too short) query to Leps-L. In
the mean time, as a shot in the dark, I did a Google image search for
"Pyraloidea," I believe, and much to my surprise, before long I found
several images of the beast posted to a European website.

I corrected BugGuide image, told my friend what it was and went to bed
thinking that all was well. Boy, was I ever wrong!

Again, please accept my apologies. I do want to thank David Wagner
for helpfully pointing out that this introduced species wasn't wide spread
at the time that Charlie Covell wrote his guide to moths of eastern North
America and that that's why it wasn't included therein.

Hopefully this note will induce a bit of clarity rather than
more obfuscation....

Mike Quinn, Austin
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