Saturday, August 15, 2015

Underwing Moth and Crotalus Horridus

My contribution to Eileeninmd's Saturday's Critters #87. Here's a member of genus Catocala (underwing moths).

Explanation of Names

Generic epithet Catocala is Greek meaning "beautiful below." (1)

Common name Underwings refers to the posture where the forewings are normally held together over the back at rest, hiding the hindwings beneath. Hence, the hindwings are the (bold and beautiful) underwings that this genus is known for.

The common names of many species are translations of the species epithets; Linnaeus chose a female/marriage theme when naming a few of the earlier-described species, and the practice was continued by later authors (hence we have The Bride, The Girlfriend, Old Wife, The Widow, Once-married Underwing, The Newlywed, The Darling, etc.)

These fanciful names help collectors and moth enthusiasts remember the various species but have no particular significance in themselves. A few species are named after a person or the larval food plant (example: Meske's Underwing, Hawthorn Underwing).

This is a timber rattlesnake my brother saw in the road on the way to my sister's place in W.V. He moved it off the road with a long stick (snake hissed and rattled, but otherwise stayed curled up and acted like a shuffleboard puck). I went back with him later that afternoon to see if I could get some better pics with my camera but the snake had moved on.

Here's looking at you kid Silver-spotted skipper.

Mouse over pics for captions, and click them for larger versions.
~

27 comments:

eileeninmd said...

Hello, your Catocala is pretty. I am not sure if I would go back look for the Timer Rattlesnake, but the photo is cool. Great sightings and photos. Thank you for linking up and sharing your post. Have a happy weekend!

TexWisGirl said...

i'm glad my part of texas doesn't have rattlers! wow, the 'beautiful underneath' sure is wonderful.

Margaret Adamson said...

That Moth is very beautiful but the Snake! ,

Gayle said...

A unique butterfly.
Heard recently about rattlesnakes dying off but didn't catch the whole story.

Ela said...

Wow !! Those moths are beautiful !!
Fantastic shots !!
Happy weekend !

Adam Jones said...

Wow! Love that moth.

Nancy Chan said...

The moths are beautiful. I will give the snake a pass. Have a great Sunday!

Karen S. said...

Wow, you are the Butterfly man! What lovely little ones you have too! The snake, well, as long as he stays where he is!

Big Bad Bald Bastard said...

I am jealous of your brother... that is some snake!

Hannah said...

It seems a lot of the moths in my yard have the colorful underwings. The only one I have seen in flight is the Cinnabar moth, they weave all around flashing the red underwing then suddenly drop to the ground or into the plants and mysteriously disappear! That's fascinating information about the naming of species. Makes sense. That's a big rattler, I'm surprised to hear it didn't even strike when pushed off the road, smaller ones I have encountered were not so docile.

Bob Bushell said...

Moths are beautiful, and, you have made them brilliant. And the snake, is one of my favourites, excellent photos.

Gilly said...

Hey! We have underwing moths too - but I am extremely glad we don't have rattle snakes! You really do take fantastic pics - thanks, I love looking at them.

Rajesh said...

Wonderful images and very informative.

Phil Slade said...

Thank you for that explanation about underwings. I know we have some here as I've seen them but was unable to put a name to them.

We don't have rattlesnakes and in fact we don't have many snakes - more's the pity.

DeniseinVA said...

Marvelous photos! Interesting information. I remember once in California a young rattlesnake curling up in the shade of my neighbor's front porch. He got it to wrap around a broom handle, put it in a big trash can, drove it up into the hills and relocated it. You were both very kind to remove your rattler from harm's way.

Magia da Inês said...

❤ه° ·.
A foto mais impressionante é da cascavel.
Quando ela enrola e silva o chocalho é sinal de bote certeiro.
Essa eu já vi.

Bom domingo!
°ه✿♫ Boa semana!
°ه✿ Beijinhos.
ºه✿✿ ♫° ·.

Debbie said...

The moth is so pretty and very unusual to me. Not a big fan of snakes, your images are so very good!!!

Ranten said...

Lovely pictures!

Rambling Woods said...

Nice that it didn't get killed as so many people kill snakes .. I have to get out and moth.... Love the photos

GreenComotion said...

That's one very cool moth - love the orange color. Love your photos of the variety of critters.
The snake has every right to hiss - just letting us know his/her feelings.
Have a Wonderful Week!
Peace :)

Sallie (FullTime-Life) said...

And the snake didn't even say thank you? Ungrateful wretch! Good enough picture .., I'd rather it didn't rise up and hiss at you! Very interesting info about the moth names and lovely captures.

Gunilla Bäck said...

The moth is very pretty. The snake is beautiful as well. Enjoy your week!

EG CameraGirl said...

I would love to come across any of these EXCEPT the rattlesnale. ;))

Andy Wilson said...

Rattle snake....oh, I'd use a long lens on that one ;)

Jennifer A. Jilks said...

I just learned about underwings when I moved here! I tried to photograph one lst night, too. It didn't go well but I have so many Vancouver photos to post for my hubby, I'm behind!
I love your snake.

Sharon Wagner said...

I see the color hidden under those little gray wings. Nice. And that snake sure isn't hiding.

NatureFootstep said...

o, that beautiful moth. I have not seen any this year. Glad to see yours.