Noctuidae - Acontiinae




Spragueia leo (Guenée)

Agrophila leo Guenée, 1852, Histoire Naturelle des Insectes. Species General des Lépidoptéres, 6:205.

Diagnosis: One's first impression of Spragueia leo is of an orange moth with horizontal dark lines. There is no sexual dimorphism between males and females. The forewing has an overall orange coloration, with with a cream white costa. Two dark horizontal lines cross the wing; one near the middle of the wing and another along the inner margin reaching to just before the postmedial line. The antemedial and postmedial lines are orange and cut into the middle dark line, but do not cross it. There are dark marks on the costa at the positions of the antemedial, postmedial, subterminal, and terminal lines. The fringe is dark brown. The hindwing is dark smokey brown without other markings. The top of the thorax is orange is two vertical brown lines. The abdominal is ringed with yellow. Wing length from base to apex in one selected individual 6 mm.

Distribution: (Based only on specimens in the USNM). Spragueia leo is widely distributed in the United States reaching from southern New England to northern Florida in the east and extending westward to the eastern Great Plains and eastern Texas in the west.

Identification Quality: Good

Larva: Unknown.

Foodplants: Spragueia leo has the following listed foodplants: Convolvulus sp. (Convolvulaceae) (HOSTS - a Database of the World's Lepidopteran Hostplants, British Museum of Natural History, 2009).

Distribution map based on specimens in the USNM


Spragueia leo

Spragueia leo might be confused with another eastern species, Spragueia onagrus. Spragueia onagrus has a ovate pattern in the basal half of the wing consisting of a yellow-white oval ringed with dark brown curved lines at the top and bottom and with a brown, straight central horizontal band. The postmedial line of onagrus is much broader than in leo and completely breaks the central dark band. The reniform is a distinct dark round spot surrounded by orange of yellow white. The brown along the lower margin and in the subtermainal area is joined into a vertical, curved band, constricted in the middle.

Similar Species

Spragueia onagrus