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  Moths - An Overview

There are no specific differences between moths or butterflies. Moths, however, usually fly at night and butterflies during the day, while butterflies have club-ended antennae which moths usually lack. Both groups have tiny, overlapping scales on the body and wings and multisegmented antennae. Their mouthparts usually form a proboscis for taking nectar and other liquids.

  Tiger and Ermine Moths

Most tiger moths are heavy-bodied and hairy, often brightly colored in various combinations of black, red, yellow, and orange, which warns off predators. Ermine moths tend to be pale or white, with small black markings. This family also includes the slender, dull footmen moths.

  Life Cycle

Eggs are laid on and around host plants. Many caterpillars in this family eat a wide range of plant matter ant the majority of species feed at night. They are very hairy, and many species are poisonous because they eat leaves of plants such as potato and laburnum, which contain toxic substances. Footmen species feed by day, and their smooth caterpillars eat lichens.


Worldwide. In well vegetated areas where host plants occur.


Some are significant forest and orchard pests.

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