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North Dakota State University

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Identification key to the Plusiinae occurring in the Dakotas

          Each page of this key contains two to four comparative statements along with accompanying illustrations and links to successive pages.  By following the links (like the game of 20 questions), you will end up at the name and picture of your specimen.  Species names are then linked to individual species pages.  One can return to previous pages in case of doubtful choices.  This key works best with pinned specimens in relatively good condition and at times requires a hand lens or a low power microscope (for strict picture matching see the photo gallery), however, since every couplet is illustrated and, with the easy facility of retracing your steps, even pictures or good sightings can be narrowed to at most a few species.  When identifying a specimen, be sure to scroll to the bottom of each page so as not to overlook a key statement.      

         Pictured below, and linked to their respective species accounts, are the four most common species of plussines in North Dakota.  In the following key, species not known to occur in North Dakota are marked with an asterisk (*).





Begin key

Return to Family Noctuiidae


Last updated: 08/07/04

Gerald M. Fauske
Research Specialist
202 Hultz Hall
Fargo, ND 58105
E-Mail: Gerald.Fauske@ndsu.nodak.edu

Published by the Department of Entomology 

Prospective students may schedule a visit by calling 1-800-488-NDSU.