Currently viewing the category: "Hummingbird Moths, Sphinx Moths or Hawk Moths"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Rustic Sphinx Invasion?
August 25, 2016 6:35 pm
Hello there!
Thanks for having such an awesome and informative site, first of all!
Because of your site, I now know that the massive, palm-sized moths that seem to be taking over my front house neighbor’s home are in fact the Manduca rustica, or “Rustic Sphinx” moth.
However, knowing this about these magnificent moonlight-nectar-drinking creatures is unfortunately not enough. She’s quite set on having them OUT of her house and really I can’t blame her. In the past 2 days she’s found 4 of them! I was nearly convinced she’d just been encountering the same moth again and again except, after capturing one to relocate to a local nature preserve, I noticed a second one within short range of the first.
So, my question is:  How do you suppose would be best to deter them from coming in, or encourage them to leave?
I wouldn’t want to harm them, I definitely appreciate their existence as validation that our shared yard is a tiny oasis ecosystem…. But when you find them in your kitchen sink you start to wonder how far the ecosystem should spread.
Thank you for your time,
Janey
Phoenix, AZ
Signature: Janey

Rustic Sphinx (image from our archives)

Rustic Sphinx (image from our archives)

Dear Janey,
We wish you had supplied an image with your comment, but luckily we have no shortage of Rustic Sphinx images in our archives.  We would recommend two control methods for your neighbor.  We strongly suspect that outdoor lighting is attracting the moths, so keeping the porch light turned off, or having it on a motion activation sensor should help reduce the number of Rustic Sphinxes attracted to the home.  This is a large moth, and it must be gaining access to the home through gaps in the doors or windows, so using caulking to seal the gaps will also reduce the chances of critters getting inside.  Finally, we suspect this is an unusual seasonal event, perhaps due to ideal weather and other environmental conditions.  We believe this will pass within a month.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Hummingbird Lepidopteran
Location: Bronx NY
August 19, 2016 8:01 am
Found this beauty outside the butterfly garden I worked at this summer. Had large transparent patches on its wings.
Signature: Anthony Macchiano

Hummingbird Clearwing

Hummingbird Clearwing

Dear Anthony,
Though there are several similar looking, closely related species in your area, we agree that this is most likely a Hummingbird Clearwing,
Hemaris thysbe, and you can read more about it on the Sphingidae of the Americas site.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Another cool moth in Bridgewater CT
Location: Bridgewater, CT
August 16, 2016 8:10 pm
Hi. This is the 2nd cool moth I’ve seen in a month. The first was a male Tulip Tree Moth. I’ve attached 2 new pics and hope you can assist in identifying them for me! Thank you in advance.
Signature: Liz

Gallium Hawkmoth

Gallium Hawkmoth

Dear Liz,
This little beauty is a Gallium Hawkmoth or Bedstraw Hawkmoth,
Hyles gallii, and according to the Sphingidae of the Americas site:  “Hyles gallii ranges coast to coast in Canada (into the Yukon) and southward along the Rocky Mountains into Mexico. It is also widely distributed throughout Europe and Asia.” 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What kind of moth
Location: Asheville
August 16, 2016 8:19 pm
This moth flew into our basement tonight. Beautiful! It’s hard to tell the scale from the picture but it was about Luna Moth size. We live in Western North Carolina, in the Appalachian Mountains.
Thanks!
Signature: Molly

Pandorus Sphinx

Pandorus Sphinx

Dear Molly,
This beauty is a Pandorus Sphinx, Eumorpha pandorus, a species that if found throughout the entire eastern portion of North America.  According to BugGuide:  “Larvae feed on leaves of peppervine (Ampelopsis spp.), grape (Vitis spp.), and Virginia Creeper (Parthenocissus quinquefolia).”

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Sphinx Moth?
Location: Rancho Cucamonga, CA
August 14, 2016 8:43 am
Can you identify this huge moth that was hanging out on a moving blanket in our backyard yesterday afternoon? He was at least three inches in length with huge dark eyes and sported a “furry” coat that resembled a rabbit’s. Being that it’s late summer in SoCal, is this what those big, green tomato hornworms morph into?
Thanks!
Signature: Suzanne

Carolina Sphinx

Carolina Sphinx

Dear Suzanne,
You are correct.  This is a Carolina Sphinx,
Manduca sexta, the adult form of the Tobacco Hornworm, the large caterpillars that feed on the leaves of cultivated tomato plants.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Strange Moth-Like Bug
Location: Metro Vancouver, BC, Canada
August 6, 2016 5:37 pm
My name is Jason, and I discovered this Moth-Like bug in July in the Metro Vancouver area in British Columbia, Canada. It was completely fur-less, with the wings being scale-less and almost plasticy. the rear of the abdomen ends in a sort of spike that was longish and seemed kind of flexible.
I estimated the body to be about two inches long.
I had ended up finding it because my cat was trying to eat it,and i thought it was really cool looking so I took pictures she stopped him from actually taking a nibble. just in case it was poisonous. the bright pink colour made me wary.
Signature: Jason

Large Elephant Hawkmoth

Large Elephant Hawkmoth

Dear Jason,
We were very surprised to get your submission of a Large Elephant Hawkmoth,
Deilephila elpenor, from Vancouver because this is a European species, and then we were even more surprised when we learned on the Sphingidae of the Americas site that it  “has recently established populations in southern British Columbia, Canada.”  According to BugGuide:  “Reportedly introduced to British Columbia ca. 1995.”  According to Pacific Northwest Moths:  ” It is unclear how the species was introduced or if it has started to spread to other areas.  It has been suggested that this moth was released deliberately by an amateur entomologist, but this has not been substantiated.”  According to the Sphingidae of the Eastern Palaearctic:  “This species has also recently been recorded from southern British Columbia, Canada, as an introduction.”  Hawkmoths are very strong fliers that are often found far out to sea, and we were secretly hoping that the Vancouver population was a result of a fertile female flying from Siberia.  To the best of our knowledge, the species is not poisonous.

Large Elephant Hawkmoth

Large Elephant Hawkmoth

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination