Sunday, April 1, 2012

Saxon-Norman-Broad, Wilkes County, Georgia: Luna Moth (Actias luna)

March 23rd, 2012. We had a few hours. The weather wasn’t great but we felt like getting out. So we drove one of the back roads in Wilkes County, Georgia. We drove out to Lexington on US-78 and turned north on GA-77 to the road marked as the Saxon-Mattox Road. It’s the last road before the Broad River crossing. This road runs from Saxon to Norman and then to Broad. On DeLorme’s Georgia Atlas & Gazetteer, the road begins as Goose Pond Road and then becomes CR-113 to Norman. The section from Norman to Broad is Norman Rd NE. We didn’t really expect to see much but we were really in for a pleasant surprise. This road runs roughly parallel to the Broad River through dry pine and deciduous forests. Periodically the road dips to cross creeks that drain into the Broad River.

The route ran through pine forests and deciduous forests. Flowering Dogwoods (Cornus florida) lined the roads in many places.

Luna Moth (Actias luna). As we rounded a corner, we caught a glimpse of something out of place. We backed up, and there it was. A Luna Moth on a tree trunk, about 18 inches above the ground.

A closer view. The tree was at the top of a steep incline above a 4-foot sheer drop to the road. There was no way we could get up close to this moth. However, we took close-up photos of a male and female Luna Moth in August 2011.

To be continued…

Click on an image to view a larger image

Identification resources:
- BugGuide: Luna Moth (Actias luna)

Related posts:

- Luna Moth (Actias luna)

- Another Luna Moth

- Saxon-Norman-Broad, Wilkes County, Georgia: Prostrate Blue Violet, Green-and-gold & Trumpet Honeysuckle

- Saxon-Norman-Broad, Wilkes County, Georgia: Spring Beauty (Claytonia virginica)

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