It wasn't bothering anyone, but the brightly colored insect that clung to the wall of a pavilion at Fenton City Park attracted a bit of attention from the people who were gathered there for a small business event.
Not many people knew what it was, most guessing a butterfly of sorts, but one person identified it correctly, although he didn't specify that it was an Actias luna (Linnaeus), otherwise known as a Luna Moth. The photo shows the lime green moth as it attached itself to the wall of the pavilion at .
Here's a description of the insect from the Missouri Department of Conservation website: "On adults, the overall color is a pale or lime green, with a dark leading edge on the forewings, and a long, tapering tail on the hindwings; each of the four wings has an eyespot. Antennae, particularly on males, are feathery. Larvae are bright green, the segments convex with narrow yellow lines between, a yellowish lateral band below the spiracles, and three lateral rows of reddish tubercles on each side; the head is brownish.
The Conservation Department says Luna Moths are common throughout the state, with adults flying from early April through August. The wingspan of the Luna Moth that made its appearance in Fenton was about four inches.
The Luna Moth mates with the female emitting pheromones which are detected by the male's feathery antennae. According to the conservation department, Luna moth larvae feed on the foliage of walnut, hickory, persimmon and sweet gum trees. Adults don’t eat at all and only live about a week.