Moth or Butterfly: Quiz Answers

The answers to the Moth or Butterfly quiz from Monday!

A. This is a Six-Spot Burnet (Zygaena filipendulae), a type of day-flying moth photographed in Hiiumaa, Estonia by Wilson44691, licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

Moth or butterfly?

Although this moth is quite colorful, it rests with its wings folded over its back, and the antennae do not have a true “club” like a butterfly.

B. This skipper (Family Hesperiidae) can be misleading–in fact, my partner’s first reaction was to say it looked like a cross between a moth and a butterfly. Grass skippers like this one often rest with their wings at an angle away from their bodies, and their bodies themselves are a bit fatter and fuzzier for their size than most butterflies. You can also see the slight “crochet hook” shape to the antennae here.

I’ve found that the more skippers I see, the more they clearly look like skippers to me. While they are generally considered butterflies, they’re quite distinctively shaped.

For a blog post

C. Kind of an obvious one here–the clubbed antennae immediately give this tattered individual away as a butterfly. I included it because its coloration is so drab–white isn’t just for moths. In fact, there’s an entire family of butterflies called whites and sulphurs (family Pieridae), to which this butterfly probably belongs.

For a blog post

This post is for National Moth Week, July 23-29, 2012.


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