Originally described and named Phalena plumata caudata by James Petiver in 1700, which roughly translates to "brilliant, feather tail", was replaced when Carl Linnaeus described the species in 1758, and renamed it Actias luna, with luna derived from Luna, the Roman moon goddess. The common name became "Luna moth"
They're some of the largest moths out there!
Luna moths typically have a wing span of about 4.5", but can go up to 7" making it one of the largest moths found in North America.
They do not have mouths or digestive systems!
During the stage of transformation from a caterpillar to a moth, their mouthparts reduce to tiny and useless proportion, and as a result, they cannot eat as adults.
Luna moths only live about a week!
Unfortunately, the fact that moths lack mouths means that they live for a very short amount of time. Their sole purpose is to mate and lay eggs before they die.
Since luna moths are nocturnal creatures, their main predator is bats!
However, they can use their tails to divert bats' attention away from their bodies. When luna moths fly, two long frills on the end of their wings spin and muddle bats' sonar and thwart a deadly attack.
Luna moths are the only moths to be featured on postage stamps!
Over two dozen types of butterflies have been featured over time but the luna moth got its own stamp in 1987 and is the only moth to bear this honor.