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

Deaths head moth in Centurion, South Africa
January 13, 2010
Hi Bugman
My 14yr old son has found this huge moth
on the front wall of our house, he has now stayed in the same spot since the 11th of Jan and today is the 13th, without moving an inch!!! Comparing pics on the internet this looks like the deaths head moth, but which one?Is he dying, is there anything we can do?When I got close with the camera, it made a loud squeeking noise and squirted a brown liquid from its tail end (yuk!!)
Andrew and James Foxley
Centurion ( Pretoria) South Africa

Death's Head Hawkmoth

Death's Head Hawkmoth

Dear Andrew and James,
We are thrilled to get your photograph of a Death’s Head Hawkmoth, Acherontia atropos, the species found in South Africa.  We frequently receive photos of the caterpillars, but submissions of the imago are not as common to our site.  The squeaking is a well documented defense mechanism.  Often, Sphinx Moths are attracted to lights and rest several days before beginning to fly again.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Mexican Moths (or butterflies)
December 29, 2009
One a cruise this August leaving Puerto Vallarta, Mexico the ships lights were drawing a large number of moths miles out to sea. One was 6-7″ across and extraordinarily “hairy” (2 photos). The other was about 3″ across the wings and with nice geometric patters (1 photo). I am submitting 2 for identification help.
Thank You
Kevin Schick
Puerto Vallarta, Mexico

Satellite Sphinx

Satellite Sphinx

Hi Kevin,
Your smaller moth is a Satellite Sphinx, Eumorpha satellitia.  You can read more about it on Bill Oehlke’s excellent website.  The species ranges from the southern portions of the U.S. down to South America.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

What’s this moth?
December 10, 2009
Found this month hanging out on our screen door this past summer, it stayed there for a couple days. The moth was about an inch and a half long and certainly an interesting bug!
Katherine from Colorado
Boulder, CO

Small Eyed Sphinx

Small Eyed Sphinx

Hi Katherine,
This beauty is a Small Eyed Sphinx, and you may read more about this species, Paonias myops, on Bill Oehlke’s excellent website.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Sphingidae
December 8, 2009
3 species of Sphingidae from Bellavista, Ecuador.
1: Perigonia sp. ?
2: Xylophanes sp.
3: Adhemarius sp.
I would be grateful for any ID-help.
Leif
Bellavista Lodge, western slope, Ecuador

Hi Leif,
Sadly, we haven’t the time to post all of your lovely images.  We are copying Bill Oehlke on this letter.  If he writes back to both of us with IDs, we will post his response.
Daniel

Adhemarius sexoculata

Adhemarius sexoculata

Hi Leif,
We had already included Bill Oehlke in our response to you and we would defer any of our feeble identification requests to his expertise.
As we found the time (it is the end of the semester and we college professors and division heads have many responsibilities at the moment, like needy students, grading, annual unit plans, program reviews, program moves, equipment orders, and evaluations) we began to attempt to research your request.  We were pleasantly surprised to find your Sphinx Moth tentatively identified as #3 Adhemarius sp. already posted on Bill Oehlke’s excellent Ecuadorean Sphingidae page and identified as Adhemarius sexoculata.

Nyceryx hyposticta

Nyceryx hyposticta

We then found the image that you tentatively identified as #1 Perigonia sp. also posted to Bill’s Ecuadorean Sphingidae website and identified as Nyceryx hyposticta.  We can’t say for certain what species your Xylophanes species is, and we searched through the thirty three possibilities that Bill Oehlke has identified as flying in Ecuador two times in vain.  Perhaps the closest is Xylophanes crotonis, or perhaps Xylophanes aglaor.  We can only guess that since we know Bill received all three of your photos when we originally copied him, that he also had difficulty with this identification, or perhaps he has not yet found the time to post it.

Xylophanes species

Xylophanes species

While we are glad that you got your identification Leif, and we are happy that Bill now has some nice living specimens posted to his website, we are sad that we were not included in the identification loop.  Perhaps Bill or Leif will find the time to provide the final species identification for our readership.

Hi
Thank you for your reply and comment.
Maybe this is too much, but it’s the only serious forum I have found so far.
As an amateur it’s very difficult to give all the correct information. All my moths from Bellavista are photographed on October 19th 2009. They were all attracted to outside lights around some of the buildings at Bellavista Lodge. Sitting on fence posts and the main gate, well actually everywhere. They were really swarming like crazy. Must have been thousands. Heaven for a moth expert I would think. Even for a birder like me!
I’m sorry, but this is really all the additional information I’m able to give. I could, however, try to estimate size. Maybe small, medium and big is too vague?!
Leif

Pink Spotted Hawkmoth

Pink Spotted Hawkmoth

Update from Bill Oehlke
Daniel,
I identified Nyceryx hyposticta, Adhemarius sexoculata and Agrius cingulata. I am going to seek help on the Xylophanes, but I think it is nebuchodonsor (sp??).
I thought I sent you same message I sent to Leif.
The white moth I think is one of the Arctiidae, the next family I am going to work on.
Bill Oehlke

Thanks Bill,
The Pink Spotted Hawkmoth, Agrius cingulata, came in a different email.  We will also include it among Leif’s beautiful Sphingidae.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

large moth
December 1, 2009
Living in Trinidad,West Indies. Found this moth at the water taxi terminal. It sat still and when I tried to move it,it started beating its wings,still sitting still! This was during the day. I can’t seem to identify it even with the striking markings.
Mary C. Boyer
Trinidad,West Indies

Neococytius cluentius

Neococytius cluentius

Dear Mary,
Though Bill Oehlke’s excellent website does not have a page on Trinidad, we located your Sphinx or Hawkmoth, Neococytius cluentius on the page for Venezuelan species.  According to Oehlke’s website, the proboscis is over nine inches long.  That long tongue must be needed to pollinate a very deep-throated flower.

Neococytius cluentius

Neococytius cluentius

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Big Black Crazy Shaped Moth??
November 10, 2009
This “moth”, has been residing in our home for several days. We couldn’t get a very good picture, but it almost has a spade shaped tail and body part. Have been looking up moth types but cannot find anything similar. Please let us know if you have any ideas, thanks! 🙂
(We put him back outside, by the way. No carnage here!)
Whitney & Brian
Central Florida

November 12, 2009
identification request
sent in three pictures of a bug a few days back, just wondering how long a request usually takes to be identified. Thanks again,
awaiting identification so we don’t kill them for no reason, as their pretty intimidating looking, and the cat is always trying to capture any renegade bugs in the house.
Brian

Mournful Sphinx

Mournful Sphinx

Hi Brian,
Thanks for your patience.  Though we are unable to respond to every question, when someone bothers to follow up on an original query, we try our best to answer the request.  This is a blurry image of a Mournful Sphinx, Enyo lugubris.  Bill Oehlke’s excellent website has numerous high quality images of the Mournful Sphinx.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination