Polyphemus moth

The Polyphemus moth doesn’t eat.
Polyphemus moth Scientific Classification
Scientific name
Antheraea polyphemus
Polyphemus moth Physical Characteristics
Brown, Purple, Black-Brown, Light-Brown
Millions, conservation status least concern
Less than a week as an adult, three months overall
Polyphemus moth Distribition

” The Polyphemus moth is called after a personality in Greek folklore!”

A participant of the Saturniidae family, this big moth is conveniently well-known by the eyespots on its wings. These places are intended to surprise would certainly- be predators when the moth unexpectedly opens its wings, which ought to provide the moth time to fly to a more secure place. Nevertheless, also if it does flee, the Polyphemus moth just lives concerning 4 days, tops. Its mouth is vestigial, and its only objective is to replicate.

5 Amazing Polyphemus Moth Realities!

Right Here are some even more truths concerning this interesting animal:

  • The caterpillar makes a clicking audio with its jaws to preventpredators If that does not function, it throws up.
  • Though the moths are nighttime, they eclose in the early morning. This provides their wings time to reinforce in the sunlight.
  • Though males can mate a couple of times, females just mate when. After mating, she invests the remainder of her life laying eggs.
  • Some individuals maintain Polyphemus moths as pets, though the insects do not such as to reproduce unless there is a food plant existing in their room.
  • Male Polyphemus moths can just fly if the temperature level is warmer than 44.6 levels Fahrenheit.

Polyphemus Moth Species, Kind, and Scientific Name

The moth’s scientific name is Antheraea polyphemus The significance of Antheraea is most likely “snazzy, flowery or brilliantly tinted.” It originates from a New Latin word obtained from the Greek antheros In taxonomy, lepidopterans in the Antheraea genus are big moths whose caterpillars create silk that is utilized as material. Relatives of the Polyphemus moth consist of the Assam silk moth, the western Polyphemus moth, which isn’t a subspecies of Antheraea polyphemus, and the Japanese oak silk moth.

The significance of polyphemus describes the cyclops Polyphemus, that abducted Odysseus and his guys in The Odyssey He was a huge with a solitary big eye in the center of his temple. Odysseus handled to place his eye out, and this permitted his staff to get away. Polyphemus’ big eye, certainly, describes the surprising eyespots on the moth’s wings.

Appearance: Just How To Recognize Polyphemus moths

Polyphemus moths are among one of the most recognizable of the silk moths. It is a titan moth with a 4 to 6- inch wingspan. Maybe misinterpreted for a butterfly up until an individual takes a better look. The ground shades of the wings vary from yellow to a deep cinnamon brownish, and there’s a red margin near the base of the animal’s forewings and 2 dark spots right at the pointers of the forewings. Yet what makes the moth simple to determine are the eyespots. The eyespots on the forewings are little and clear, however the eyespots on the hindwings are big and purple with a lemon- tinted and lemon- designed spot within them. The antennae of the males are deeply feathery. The antennae of the female are much less feathery, and she is plumper due to her eggs.

Naturally, the Antheraea polyphemus is a caterpillar prior to it is amoth After hatching out from a little egg that looks like an electronic camera battery other than it is brown with 2 brownish bands around it, the caterpillar is black and white candy striped, instead like a zebra. It has orange setae down its back. After it loses its skin it comes to be an extreme color of fallen leave environment-friendly, with silver and red excrescences on top of the stomach area. Hairs grow from the red places, and every stomach section has an angled yellow line.

The caterpillar has an orange- brownish head that’s partly taken out right into the initial thoracic section, brownish “real” legs, and yellow and black prolegs. Prolegs are fleshy protrusions located on the 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, and tenth stomach sectors. The caterpillar can be as long as 3 inches.

Male Polyphemus moth (Antheraea polyphemus). Eyespots on hind wings are often covered by front wing and then revealed suddenly in attempt to startle predators.
Male Polyphemus moth (Antheraea polyphemus). Eyespots on back wings are commonly covered by the front wing and after that disclosed unexpectedly in an effort to surprise predators.Gerry Bishop/Shutterstock. com

Polyphemus Moths: Male vs Female

It’s simple to inform the sexes apart with these moths. The males have downy antennae which aid in breeding, for they get the scents launched by the females. The antennae of the females are extra slim and much less bushy. Females are additionally fatter than males because of their freight of eggs, and if breeding does not happen after a time period, she’ll just launch them also if they’re not fed.

An individual can also inform the sex of the animal by the pupae and the caterpillars. A female pupa has a notch at the end, and the lines of what will certainly come to be the antennae do not fulfill. The male does not have a notch, and the antennae lines fulfill. Male caterpillars additionally have a black pit at the end of their nine stomach section.

Environment: Where to Discover Polyphemus Moths

Polyphemus moths are among one of the most typical moths in The United States and Canada. Caterpillars can be located on their host plants in the springtime and in the late summertime. These plants consist of ash and birch trees, dogwoods, apple, and various other fruit trees, maples, oaks, hazels, willows, and their family members. They additionally feed upon increased shrubs and plants associated with roses. The shade of the caterpillar matches the shades of the host plant’s fallen leaves, that makes them tough to see.

Diet: What Do Polyphemus Moths Eat?

Polyphemus moths do not eat or attack. Their mouths are vestigial and pointless. Their caterpillars, nevertheless, are starved and can eat 86,000 times their very own weight from the moment they hatch out of their egg to the moment they pupate.


  1. University of Florida, Available here: https://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/MISC/MOTHS/polyphemus_moth.htm
  2. Integrated Taxonomic Information System, Available here: https://www.itis.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=189057#null
  3. Pacific Northwest Moths, Available here: http://pnwmoths.biol.wwu.edu/browse/family-saturniidae/subfamily-saturniinae/antheraea/antheraea-polyphemus/
  4. Indiana Nature, Available here: https://www.indiananature.net/pages/taxa/Animalia/a/Antheraea.php
  5. BugGuide, Available here: https://bugguide.net/node/view/427

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