Subject: A large, interesting moth
Location: Central Texas
October 18, 2012 11:56 am
Last night while walking to my mother’s house I saw this very large moth fluttering near the porch light. I have never seen a moth quite like this one, the vertical stripes on its wings were so delicate they looked painted. It vibrated its wings very quickly for a few minutes, and then settled down. When it spread its wings, there appeared to be some red coloration. I live in central Texas, and took these photos yesterday (October 17th 2012)
Thank you so much for sending in this photo of the legendary Mariposa nocturna de 100 Vatios, or as it is better known, the Whitelined Sphinx, Hyles lineata, alternately known as the Striped Morning Sphinx. 100 watt light bulbs will attract prodigious numbers of Striped Morning Sphinxes when they are in flight. See the Firefly Forest for more information on the Whitelined Sphinx. Sphingidae of the Americas is another wonderful source for this family.
Thanks so much for the informative response. I feel a bit sheepish now seeing that it’s such a common moth, but quite novel to me. In truth, I have always been afraid of moths and butterflies but as of late, have decided to combat my fear with curiosity and knowledge. With the help of your site, I’m finding the world of entomology to be exciting and less than terrifying. Fear really is the basis for hatred and violence, and I can proudly state there is no longer any unnecessary carnage taking place in my home. I’ve always been a fan of beetles and bees, but moths- not so much. These insects and I are finally living in peace, and What’s That Bug is almost solely responsible for the shift in attitude.
Hi Again Susan,
We are happy to hear about your change of attitude, and we are proud to tag your posting with the Bug Humanitarian Award.
I am honored to be tagged with the Bug Humanitarian Award! I wish I could take back my previous actions towards some harmless moths that were just living their lives- but I can’t. I can, however, continue to be compassionate towards them from here on out (relocation via stemware and paper as you suggested has come in very handy in the house!) I think it’s very kind you’d extend the award to someone who was once a villain!
Long live the Striped Morning Sphinx!