Death's Head Hawkmoth

moth
October 7, 2009
please can you tell me what this moth is that we came across whilst we were on holiday in the southwest of france in september 2009? are they poisones and should i have handled it
pauline
south west france

Death's Head Hawkmoth
Death's Head Hawkmoth

Hi pauline,
Congratulations on your sighting of a Death’s Head Hawkmoth, Acherontia atropos, the moth that was featured in the book and movie Silence of the Lambs.  It is found in the Middle East and Mediterranean regions.  Though we have received several images of caterpillars in the past, we believe this is the first image we have received of an adult moth or imago.  Wikipedia has an extensive page on this fascinating species.  It is not poisonous.

Comment
The Caterpillar of this species [which I believe has a wide geographic range] is consumed. In Papua New Guinea.
Dave Gracer

5 thoughts on “Death's Head Hawkmoth”

  1. Is the Hawk Moth toxic when eaten, if it has consumed an oleander plant?

    I occasionally feed them to my Dragons. (Bought on-line).

    Thank you.

    Emerald

    Reply
  2. Is the Hawk Moth toxic when eaten, if it has consumed an oleander plant?

    I occasionally feed them to my Dragons. (Bought on-line).

    Thank you.

    Emerald

    Reply

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