Wasp Moth: Fireweed Borer

some type of clearwing moth from Fairbanks Alaska
I took a picture of this little guy on one of the leaves of my tomato plant. He was less than an inch long.
Erik Anderson
Education Associate
Alaska Department of Fish & Game
Fairbanks Alaska

Hi Erik,
Your Clearwing Moth is one of the Wasp Moths in the Family Sesiidae. They often have dark bodies banded with yellow, red or white. Adults fly diuranlly and visit flowers where the wasp mimicry is a protective coloration. The caterpillars are borers and sometimes do considerable damage in orchards where they damage stems, roots and bark. Sorry we can’t give you an exact species.

Ed Note:
January 17, 2009
Thanks to taftw who identified many of our unidentified Sesiid Wasp Moths today, we now know that this is a Fireweed Borer, Albuna pyramidalis.  The species is well represented on BugGuide

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