Family Zygaenidae

Burnet Moths / Leaf Skeletonizer Moths / Smoky Moths


Members of this family are medium to large moths (16 - 28 mm wingspan). Many tropical species are brightly colored and may have metallic-colored scales. Others are more drab in overall coloration, though they may sport a red or yellowish collar. Some species are mimics of Lycid Beetles and have the coloration and markings of that group.

The antennae are usually relatively thick and pectinate; the probocus is also thickened. The ocelli are not very close to the compound eyes, and are often quite small.

While moths in this family sometimes come to lights, they are primarily diurnal.

One of the common names of this family refers to the larvae feeding on and skeletonizing leaves. Both the larvae and adults are protected by compounds of cyanide (Arnett, 2000).


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Acoloithus falsarius
Pyromorpha dimidiata

American Insects site