Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center
Wingspan 3.6 cm. Forewing is pale pink-red to dark red-brown with weak basal and postmedian lines; hindwing is white with a darker border; head is yellow with a narrow black line crossing the prothoracic collar. This noctuid is common and widely distributed in dry forests, particularly common in ponderosa pine forests. Moths fly in midsummer. Caterpillars feed on the foliage of bitterbrush (Purshia tridentata).
Similar species: Tesagrotis piscipellis head is red, without a black prothoracic line; Tesagrotis corrodera forewing is red-brown and streaked with yellow; Setagrotis pallidicollis (Noctuidae) forewing is pale gray with red, orbicular spot large and elongate, common in dry forests in the Pacific Northwest, caterpillars feed on the foliage of flowering trees and shrubs; Setagrotis vocalis forewing is gray and occurs in the Rocky Mountains, Great Basin and Southwest.