Polyphemus Moth Ovipositing

Subject: Gorgeous Specimen
Location: Jacksonville Florida
April 17, 2013 5:06 am
Can you please identify this specimen? I am presume it is a moth based on the ’fuzzy’ antenna.
Signature: Danno

Polyphemus Moth
Polyphemus Moth

Dear Danno,
This lovely moth is the widest ranging North American Giant Silkmoth, the Polyphemus Moth.  It is wonderful that one of your images has captured this female in the process of ovipositing.  Hopefully she had a chance to mate.  Giant Silkmoths do not feed as adults, and they only live long enough to mate and produce a new generation.  The male Polyphemus Moth has more feathered antennae so that he can locate the female by the pheromones she releases.

Polyphemus Moth Laying Eggs
Polyphemus Moth Laying Eggs

3 thoughts on “Polyphemus Moth Ovipositing”

    • Hi Danno,
      We are thrilled to hear it. If she mated and the eggs are viable, they should hatch in a week or so. The caterpillars feed on a wide variety of plants, including “birch, grape, hickory, maple, oak, willow, and members of the rose family” according to BugGuide: http://bugguide.net/node/view/427 . You should try raising some of the caterpillars or releasing them on the appropriate food plants, and if the plants are in your garden, you can watch them grow.

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