What Is a Luna Moth?


A luna moth, also known as Actias luna, is a pale green moth with long and curving tails, according to Butterflies and Moths of North America. The luna moth was discovered in 1758 by Linnaeus. It's native to North American and found from Nova Scotia to Ontario and down into the midwestern and eastern United States and into Mexico.

Luna moths have a wingspan range of 2 15/16 inches to 4 1/8 inches. They are strong fliers and live in deciduous hardwood forests. Some of the hosts of the Luna moth caterpillar include sumacs, walnut trees, sweet gum trees and birch trees. Eggs are usually laid at night on both sides of the host plant's leaves. The eggs hatch about a week after they have been laid.

The luna moth is notable for its pale green wings. Both the forewings and hindwings bear eye spots. The sexes are alike except the antennae of the male moths are more feathered.

The caterpillar is plump and green with red spots. Its cocoon is papery and spun on the ground.