Plants and Animals

Meropleon ambifusca Newman's brocade

Key Characteristics

The Newman's brocade has an average wingspan of 1.2 inches (3 cm). The forewing (i.e., upper wing) is gray with the basal or inner half dark gray and heavily shaded with black, especially toward the inner (i.e., lower/bottom) margin. The outer half of the forewing is whitish shaded with light gray. The hind wing is whitish and pale gray.

Status and Rank

US Status:
State Status: SC - Special Concern (rare or uncertain; not legally protected)
Global Rank: G3G4 - Rank is uncertain, ranging from vulnerable to apparently secure
State Rank: S2S3 - Rank is uncertain, ranging from imperiled to vulnerable

Occurrences

CountyNumber of OccurrencesYear Last Observed
Barry11994
Cass11997
Oakland12008
Wayne12012

Information is summarized from MNFI's database of rare species and community occurrences. Data may not reflect true distribution since much of the state has not been thoroughly surveyed.

Habitat

The typical habitat for Newman's brocade is a marshy wetland although at present, the host plant and the larval stages of this species have not yet been described. The larvae are probably borers in an aquatic sedge or rush. Other habitats with which this species is associated include prairies, fens, ephemeral wetlands and forest openings.

Specific Habitat Needs

Host plant needed in: Coastal plain marshEmergent marshMesic prairiePrairie fenSouthern wet meadowWet prairieWet-mesic sand prairie.

For each species, lists of natural communities were derived from review of the nearly 6,500 element occurrences in the MNFI database, in addition to herbarium label data for some taxa. In most cases, at least one specimen record exists for each listed natural community. For certain taxa, especially poorly collected or extirpated species of prairie and savanna habitats, natural community lists were derived from inferences from collection sites and habitat preferences in immediately adjacent states (particularly Indiana and Illinois). Natural communities are not listed for those species documented only from altered or ruderal habitats in Michigan, especially for taxa that occur in a variety of habitats outside of the state.

Natural communities are not listed in order of frequency of occurrence, but are rather derived from the full set of natural communities, organized by Ecological Group. In many cases, the general habitat descriptions should provide greater clarity and direction to the surveyor. In future versions of the Rare Species Explorer, we hope to incorporate natural community fidelity ranks for each taxon.

Management Recommendations

Little is known about this species' status, distribution, life history and ecology. As a result, little is known about specific threats to this species. Thus, specific management recommendations for this species can not be provided at this time. In general, surveys are needed to determine this species' current status and distribution in the state. Research to obtain information on this species' life history and ecology and assess threats to its conservation also is warranted. The sites at which this species has been documented should be protected. Adequate and suitable habitat at these sites need to be maintained including sufficient densities of the species' host plant(s). The wetlands with which this species is associated need to be maintained and managed including maintaining or restoring hydrologic regimes (e.g., protecting groundwater recharge areas, avoiding or limiting surface water inputs from drainage ditches and agricultural fields), controlling shrub encroachment and invasive species, and restoring fire (i.e., prescribed burning) and/or other disturbance regimes.

Active Period

Flight from third week of August to fourth week of September

Survey Methods

The Newman's brocade is single brooded and overwinters in the egg stage. At present, the larval stages of this species have not been described. In Michigan, adults of this species have been seen flying from mid-August through September. The best way to survey for this species is by blacklighting at night during the adult flight period, a technique whereby a sheet is stretched across two trees or poles and an ultraviolet light is used to attract moths to the sheet. Moths can be collected directly from the sheet. Insects come to light usually in largest numbers on still, dark, cloudy nights when both temperature and humidity are high). Reports of this species should be documented with a voucher specimen and verification by a species expert.

Blacklighting

Survey Period: From third week of August to fourth week of September

Time of Day: Evening
Humidity: Humid
Cloud Cover: Overcast
Air Temperature: Warm
Wind: No Wind
Survey Method Comment: Ideal survey conditions but surveys can be conducted under other conditions as well.

Time of Day: Night
Humidity: Humid
Cloud Cover: Overcast
Air Temperature: Warm
Wind: No Wind
Survey Method Comment: Ideal survey conditions but surveys can be conducted under other conditions as well.

References

Survey References

  • Covell, Charles. A Field Guide to the Moths of Eastern North America. Peterson Field Guide Series, Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, MA. 496 pp.
  • Martin, J.E.H. 1977. The Insects and Arachnids of Canada (Part 1): Collecting, preparing, and preserving insects, mites, and spiders. Publication 1643. Biosystematics Research Institute, Ottawa.

Technical References

  • Covell, Charles. A Field Guide to the Moths of Eastern North America. Peterson Field Guide Series, Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, MA. 496 pp.
  • Forbes, W.T.M. 1954. Lepidoptera of New York and Neighboring States, Noctuidae, Part III. Cornell University Agricultural Experiment Station, NY. 433 pp.
  • Kost, M.A. 2001. Natural community abstract for southern wet meadow. Michigan Natural Features Inventory, Lansing, MI. 5 pp.
  • Spieles, J.B., P.J. Comer, D.A. Albert, and M.A. Kost. 1999. Natural community abstract for prairie fen. Michigan Natural Features Inventory, Lansing, MI. 4 pp.
  • Stehr, F. W. 1997. Michigan Lepidoptera Survey Sites and Seasonal Occurrence of Michigan's Listed Species Annual Report 1997. 30 pp.+ MI Lepidoptera Survey Data Collection Form