BugwoodWiki Article

nun moth
Lymantria monacha (Linnaeus)

Overview

Nun moth is a native of Europe. It is not known to be established in North America. Egg masses on crates, pallets of other packing materials are the most likely route of entry. Hosts include Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) and Norway spruce (Picea abies); however, the majority of conifers and broad-leaved tree species may also be hosts. Mated females deposit eggs in bark crevices under scales or lichens. The round eggs have a diameter of about 1/16 of an inch and are grayish brown. In late April or early May (at a temperature of about 50 – 60 °F) young caterpillars hatch, climb to the crown, and feed on young needles and male flowers. The newly hatched caterpillars are 1/8 of an inch long and have long hair that disappears after the first molt. Caterpillars molt 5-6 times. After the third molt, caterpillars gain their characteristic color. Caterpillars, characteristically, have a grayish-yellow head with black and brown spots, and bodies dark with light spots on the third, seventh, and eighth segments. There are tufts of hair of various lengths on the sides of the body. One caterpillar can damage about 300 Scots pine needles or 1,000 Norway spruce needles during its development. If a spruce tree is defoliated more than 50% it usually dies, however the Scots pine is more resistant than most conifer species. Pupae are 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch long. They change from green to dark brown/metallic black and develop tufts of white hair. Adults emerge and swarm from July through August and sometimes into mid- September. During the day the moths usually stay on lower parts of tree trunks, and at night males fly up to a third of a mile to find females. Females are 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch long with a 1 3/4 to 2 1/4 inch wingspan, and males are about 1/2 of an inch long with a 1 1/3 to 1 3/4 inch wingspan. Female antennae are thread-like, while male antennae are comb-shaped. The forewings of both sexes are white with wavy, dark bands. The hindwings are brownish-gray. However, color varies from white to dark forms.

Resources

Selected Images


1194078
1194078

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Adult(s)
DAFF Archive
1194082
1194082

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Adult(s)
DAFF Archive
1259103
1259103

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Egg(s)
Landesforstpräsidium Sachsen Archive
1259129
1259129

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Larva(e)
Landesforstpräsidium Sachsen Archive
1259128
1259128

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Larva(e)
Landesforstpräsidium Sachsen Archive
1258013
1258013

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Larva(e)
Stanislaw Kinelski
2112081
2112081

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Pupa(e)
Petr Kapitola
5431692
5431692

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Adult(s)
Melody Keena
2515023
2515023

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Larva(e)
Daniel Adam
1260019
1260019

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Adult(s)
Hannes Lemme
1260020
1260020

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Adult(s)
Hannes Lemme
1292027
1292027

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Adult(s)
Robert Dzwonkowski
1259122
1259122

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Indicator(s)
Landesforstpräsidium Sachsen Archive
0534086
0534086

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Damage
Petr Kapitola
1259100
1259100

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Damage
Landesforstpräsidium Sachsen Archive
1259117
1259117

nun moth
Lymantria monacha
Damage
Landesforstpräsidium Sachsen Archive

Taxonomic Rank

Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subphylum: Atelocerata
Class: Hexapoda (including Insecta)
Infraclass: Neoptera
Subclass: Pterygota
Order: Lepidoptera
Superfamily: Noctuoidea
Family: Lymantriidae
Subfamily: Orgyiinae
Tribe: Lymantriini
Genus: Lymantria

Other System Links

NPDN Pest: ITAXAKA

Synonyms and Other Names

Other Common Names:
black arches, black-arched tussock

Categories

Category: Foliage Feeding Insects