The insect belongs to the moth family and to the order of butterflies. Among others there are the species Harrisina americana and Harrisina Metallica. The insect, which was first discovered in 1941 in California, is native to Mexico and some southwestern US states. The moth has narrow black wings and a reddish collar. The wingspan is 18 to 28 mm, the length 8 to 12 mm. The caterpillars (larvae), which are up to 15 mm long, have a dark head; the body is yellow with a continuous black band or sequence of black dots over each body segment. They live permanently on the underside of the leaves and often stand side by side. They feed on the soft tissue of the leaves, of which only the rib skeleton remains. This is why the pest is also called a "skeletonizer". See also under vine enemies.