From the monthly archives: "August 2005"

Hi there,
We found this beastie clinging to our wine bottles one morning, any chance you could clarify its species? We guessed at a Modest Sphinx. Do you think it is unusual for this to be found in the UK? I see from your site that it is really only native to US and Canada. I look forward to your response.
Many thanks,
Natasha Ewers.

Hi Natasha,
This looks very similar to the U.S. Modest Sphinx, but I have located a site dedicated to British Hawkmoths that lists it as a Poplar Sphinx. So, they have the same food plant. They seem to be closely related despite having different genus names. Perhaps some taxonomy needs to be done here. Here is what the site reports: “Poplar Hawk-Moth (Laothoe populi ) The most frequently seen of all the reserve’s hawk-moths and may be on the wing from late May until early August. The peak period though is July, when moth-trapping sessions can produce 5-10 on a single night. The larvae are probably dependant on either white poplar or sallow as a foodplant. “

Big Moth in Tucson
HI there Bugman,
My neighbor and I have seen a really big moth on our houses. The moth measures approximately 3 x 6 inches, maybe bigger. It looks something like the Waved Sphinx on your web site. I wonder if you know what type of moth this is, what it eats and how will I identify it what it’s a caterpillar? Here a picture of it:
Thanks In Advance.
Phil Mortello

Hi Phil,
This is a Black Witch, Ascalapha odorata. It is a tropical and subtropical species that feeds on trees in the pea family like acacia. It is a Central American species that migrates north in the fall, but for unknown reasons as it cannot reproduce in a cold climate. These owlet moths can fly great distances, and they are even reported from Canada. Yours is the most detailed image we have received of this species.

This is the greatest bug site ever!
I spend hours everyday outside exploring nature with students. I must hear "What’s this bug? " fifty times a day. Your site has been the best source I have found to answer this question, no matter how many times the kiddos ask! It is truly a bug lover’s dream. Thanks!
Eugena Vicars
Outdoor Learning Facilitator
Bransom Elementary

What is this bug??
I took this photo in july ’05 in the Puget Sound are of Washington state. It was on the side of my house and was about2.5" across at the legs.Thank you for the I.D. -Lynne

Hi Lynne,
This is a Giant Western Crane Fly, Holorusia rubiginosa. It is harmless. This is the biggest fly west of the Rockies.

First of all I have to tell you my children and I love this site .We had fun taking pictures while camping in Nova Scotia, Canada and then trying to identify the various insects using your site .We would appreciate your helping identifying the insects that we could not identify for ourselves .I have attached all the insect pictures from our trip.
Thank you,
The Skinner Family

Hi Skinners,
Though we have written back personally about all your insects, we are only posting the White Admiral since it is a new species color variation for our site. The White Admiral, or Red Spotted Admiral, is a color variation of Limenitis arthemis. The other color variation is already posted on our site and that is the Red Spotted Purple.

What is this bug??
Dear Bugman,
I was in Maine for a week checking out the wildlife when I almost crushed a worm/silkworm of some kind while hiking. I could not identify this worm with the resources I have checked out thus far. The photo is attached. If you cant help thanks Bugman. If not thanks for you time.

Hi Eric,
Nice photo of an Luna Moth Caterpillar, Actias luna, one of the Giant Silk Moths. We get many images of the adult of this gorgeous green moth, but yours is one of the few caterpillar images.