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Black Witch Moth (July 8, 2015)

One of our growers from the Yuma area found this moth in his property. The insect has a wingspan of about 6 inches. In the picture you can see the wings have a small spot with the shape of a number nine or a comma. This marking was really helpful for its identification. We believe it is Ascalpha odorata or Black Witch Moth. Some of its host plants are legumes like mesquite. These moths are known in the Bahamas as Money Moths or Moneybats, the legend says that if they land on you, you will come into money. In other places if a Black Witch lands above your door and stays there for a while you will supposedly win the lottery. So congratulations to our grower, we hope the folklore becomes reality in his case.
WIKIPEDIA, July 7, 2015
BUGGUIDE, July 10, 2005



For questions or comments on any of the topics please contact Marco Pena at the Yuma Agricultural Center.
College of Agriculture, The University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ.

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