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a family of moths, commonly called tiger moths. Wingspan, 3-8 cm. The wings are brilliantly colored and at rest are folded rooflike over the body.
The caterpillars are covered with hairs (often long ones) growing from flat warts. They are omnivorous, feeding chiefly on the leaves of herbaceous plants or lichens. Tiger moths hibernate as caterpillars and, rarely, as pupae.
There are about 5,000 species, found throughout the world, but with greatest variety in the tropics. About 200 species are found in the USSR. Certain tiger moths are pests; the fall web-worm (Hyphantria cuned) damages gardens and forests and representatives of the genus Ocnogyna harm pasture lands.