For National Moth Week we have a moth with an awesome name: The Tufted Bird Dropping Moth, Cerma cerintha. It is a type of noctuid or owlet moth.
Moths are often all about camouflage and this one can do double duty.
For example if it was perched on tree bark covered with lichen and moss, it might blend right in.
On a leaf it might look like a bird dropping, as the common name suggests.
BugGuide has some photographs of the caterpillars. They feed on plants in the rose family, including pears, apples, cherries, and hawthorns.
The tufted part of the name comes from the tufts of scales on the back of the thorax and wings. The tufts aren’t easy to see from a back view. Try this side view.
The tufted bird dropping moth is found in the eastern half of North America where its food plants grow. It’s common, but not much is known about its biology.
Isn’t it cool? Are we beginning to convince you that moths are just as interesting as butterflies?