Location: Northeast, OH
June 20, 2012 1:06 am
We found this beauty in our front yard and have been trying to identify it. We would love to know how to tag it in our family nature journal.
Signature: Thanks, Melissa
The best we can do right now is a family identification. This is a Clearwing Moth in the family Sesiidae, a group that includes many mimics of wasps and bees. You can search BugGuide to try to determine the species identity.
Update: November 17, 2012
Thanks to a comment we just received, we now know that this is a Rhododendron Borer, Synanthedon rhododendri . Alas, BugGuide has not photos in their guide for comparison, and there is but one image of a mounted specimen available on Bugguide, but it does appear to match. There is also an image of a mounted specimen on the Moth Photographers Group. Though there are no photos of the moth, there are photos of the damage caused by the Rhododendron Borer on Gardenphile. Finally, Penn State University has a very comprehensive posting with a nice entomological drawing. Seems What’s That Bug? might have one of the only photos of a living specimen available online.