|scientific name Selenia alciphearia Walker|
common name Brown-tipped Thorn
Mixedwood and deciduous forests and woodlands.
A spring-flying moth, peaking throughout May.
This large and fairly robust geometrid moth that mimics wilted leaves with its jagged, rust and brown wings. Ground colour rust-tan with brighter rust shades at the wing margins, and a pinkish white shade along the forewing costa; and with three dark brown transverse lines. Very similar to S. kentaria, but in general slightly smaller and darker rusty browns (more yellow-brown in kentaria; alciphearia has the PM line straighter on both wings (best seen on the underside). S. kentaria usually has a jagged or wavy forewing PM line with a more pronounced indentation midway, and the hindwing PM line is more irregular and slightly curved outwardly (straight or nearly so in alciphearia). Some specimens may be impossible to determine without examining the genitalia (see McGuffin, 1987).
The immature stages are described in detail by McGuffin (1987). Larvae are twig mimics and cannot be separated from those of S. kentaria (see Ives & Wong 1988, Wagner et al. 2001). Pupae hibernate in a cocoon between leaves, often on the host (McGuffin 1987).
Not of concern
Larvae feed on deciduous shrubs, particularly willows (Salix spp.) and alder (Alnus spp.), also on Ribes and paper birch (Betula papyrifera. (McGuffin 1987).
Yukon and BC east to Labrador, south to New York and North Carolina (McGuffin 1987, Wagner et al. 2001). Found throughout the parklands and boreal forest regions in Alberta.
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