Species of the Week: The Pearly Wood-Nymph

Pearly Wood-nymph3 - Staff House, Murphys Point PP, Perth, ON

This week is dedicated to the Pearly Wood-Nymph! Like its close cousin, the Beautiful Wood-Nymph, these nocturnal moths are members of the genus Eudryas and can be seen in flight at Murphys Point between June and August. Curiously, both have evolved protective camouflage that gives adult specimens the appearance of bird droppings! Like the vast majority of winged insects, moths develop from their larval stage (in this case a caterpillar) into winged adults through metamorphosis. Murphys Point hosts a number of flowering plants for Pearly Wood-Nymph caterpillars to feed on, such as Virginia Creeper and Evening Primrose, to gain enough strength in order to go through metamorphosis. So, Murphys Point is a great place to start looking for moths. In fact, since 2015 almost 800 species- including the Pearly Wood-Nymph- have been added to the park’s moth list thanks to our Biologist, Mark Read.

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