New York Natural Heritage Program
Golden Aster Flower Moth
Schinia tuberculum (Hübner, [1831])
Insects

Identifying Characteristics [-]
The golden aster flower moth is cryptically colored. Similar to many other flower moths (Wagner et al. 2008), its coloration is variable. In fact, seven different variations in appearance (phenotype) have been documented in Louisiana (V. Brou, personal communication). The forewings usually contain various shades of gold or red, and the hind wings usually are predominantly dark brown. Both the forewings and hind wings contain pale patches. The wingspan is approximately 20 mm. Males seem to have larger wings than females, and the pattern on the forewings of males and females is different (Brou 2006).

Best Life Stage for Proper Identification [-]
The adult is the best life stage for identification.

Behavior [-]
This moth species has one annual generation. It is active both during the day (from the late morning to the afternoon) and at night (Hardwick 1996). During the day, it can be found resting on the stems and flower stalks, or feeding on the flowers, of its food source, Pityopsis falcata (sickle-leaf golden-aster, sickle-leaf silkgrass) (Wagner et al. 2008). At night, it is easily taken at light (Hardwick 1996).

Diet [-]
In New York State, the food source of the golden aster flower moth is Pityopsis falcata (sickle-leaf golden-aster, sickle-leaf silkgrass). Elsewhere in its range, P. graminifolia (narrowleaf silkgrass) has also been recorded as one of its food sources (Wagner et al. 2008), but this species does not occur in New York State.
Golden Aster Flower Moth Images
click to enlarge
The Best Time to See
The best time to see golden aster flower moths is during their flight season. In New York State, the moths have been documented to fly from late July to mid September.
J F M A M J J A S O N D
Present Reproducing
The time of year you would expect to find Golden Aster Flower Moth present (blue shading) and reproducing (orange shading) in New York.