Snowy Urola Moth – Urola nivalis

Snowy Urola Moth – Urola nivalis
Crambid Snout Moths (Crambidae) / Crambine Snout Moths (Crambinae) / Hodges#5464
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Live adult moths photographed at Castle Rock State Park, Oregon, Illinois. Size: 8mm

Snowy Urola Moth

This is one lovely moth, one of the small gems of nature we rarely get to see up close.
The snowy urola moth is well-known for the blinding-white, silky appearance of the wings. Indeed, its flight is easily followed in weedy fields and waste places ranging from eastern North America west to Illinois and Texas; southern Canada south to Florida and northern Mexico.

Host plants include many in the Olive family (Oleaceae), mainly privet (Lingustrum spp.) [3].

Family Crambidae contains about 850 species in 9 subfamilies in North America, and about 11,630 described species in 15 subfamilies in the world [1]. Formerly classified as a subfamily of Pyralidae, the snout moths include many important agricultural pest species:

  • Grape leaf-folder: Larvae are leaf-tiers and pests in Napa and Sonoma vinyards in California.
  • Sod Webworm:  Larvae of  N. American native moths in the genus Crambus are serious pests of lawns and especially golf courses.
  • Sugar Cane Borer:  Crop pest in sugar cane, sorghum, rice, and other grasses
  • Southwestern corn borer: Serious pest in numerous crops; corn, sorghum, millet, sugar cane and other field crops. [2]

Snowy Urola Moth

Snowy Urola Moth


  1., "Family Crambidae – Crambid Snout Moths"
  2. Wikipedia, "Sugarcane Borer" "Crambus" "Crambidae"
  3. Texas A&M University, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, "Urola nivalis"
Moths and their larvae (caterpillars) are major agricultural pests worldwide. The caterpillar of the gypsy moth (Lymantria dispar) causes severe damage to forests in the northeast United States, where it is an invasive species. In tropical and subtropical climates, the diamondback moth (Plutella xylostella) is perhaps the most serious pest of brassicaceous crops. Several moths in the family Tineidae are commonly regarded as pests because their larvae eat fabric such as clothes and blankets made from natural proteinaceous fibers such as wool or silk.
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