Status of the Rattlesnake-Master Borer Moth (Papaipema eryngii) in Illinois

Michael J. Dreslik, James R. Wiker, Terry L. Esker, Jen Mui

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


Global declines in biodiversity are most often triggered by severe habitat loss followed by issues associated with fragmentation and isolation. Such declines are also readily apparent among insect populations with losses also occurring from agricultural and industrial herbicide/pesticide use. Illinois has lost nearly all of its native prairie with only small isolated remnants occurring throughout the state; however, large-scale efforts have been undertaken to restore prairie acreage. In the Lepidoptera, the stem/root borer moths of the genus Papaipema, several species use specific prairie plants as their primary larval hosts. Of the 35 known Papaipema species in Illinois, 21 are listed as Species in Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN). The conservation concern is due to habitat fragmentation, alteration, and loss in areas formally supporting populations of their respective larval host plants. The Rattlesnake-Master Borer Moth (Papaipema eryngii) is listed as threatened in Illinois and is currently a Federal candidate under review for Federal Listing under the Endangered Species Act. Our objectives were to conduct a status and distribution survey for the Rattlesnake-Master Stem Borer Moth in Illinois and provide inference on other Papaipema SGCNs as encountered. Our work will be used to guide conservation efforts for this group of noctuid moths.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationMidwest Fish and Wildlife Conference 2020
StatePublished - 2020


  • INHS


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