Green moth found in Japan
October 13, 2009
My friend took a photo of this lovely moth in Tokyo, mid-October, near her apartment. I’ve been trying to find out exactly what it is, and I think it may be a Cephonodes species, but I’m unsure exactly what. If you could help give an exact ID that would be wonderful 🙂
Your photo is tiny and lacking in resolution, but we agree that this is a Cephonodes species, probably Cephonodes hylas. We found a photo quickly by doing a web search of Sphingidae Japan, and then double checked on the Sphingidae of the Eastern Palaearctic website. That site states: “When the moth first emerges, which it usually does in the early morning, the hyaline portion of the wings is covered densely with greyish scales. These come off in a little cloud when the wings are rapidly vibrated before the first flight (Bell & Scott, 1937)” and we believe these scales are present in your specimen, indicating that it has newly metamorphosed and has not yet flown. Diurnal Sphinghids are often called Hummingbird Moths in North America since they are frequently mistaken for hummingbirds, and we are taking creative license with that common name in our posting title.