The Small-Eyed Sphinx is a large moth with vivid blue eyespots on its yellow and black hindwings.
A member of the Hawk Moth family, the size of this species can be startling. Females can average 7.5 cm, or 3 inches, though males are usually smaller. The actual eyes of this brown moth are normal in size. The eyespots on its wings are smaller in comparison to other Sphinx moths. These small black and blue eyespots are on each hindwing and they are visible when the wings are opened flat. An orange stripe on its thorax and back looks like a thin mohawk. Waves of dark purple, light purple, and brown cross the forewings. Inner and outer wing tips have orange patches. Antennae are white. Its preferred habitats include forests and fields.
The green caterpillar has a spiny horn on one end. It also has thin yellow angled lines on the sides of its body. It feeds on a variety of trees and vines: cherry, hawthorn, serviceberry, and grape. They emerge as moths late-spring and summer, flying into lights like most moths do. In warmer states, they may be active year-round.
Scientific Name: Paonias myops
Butterfly or Moth
Size (Adult; Length): 45mm to 75mm (1.76in to 2.93in)
Note: An insect's reach is not limited by lines drawn on a map and therefore species may appear in areas, regions and/or states beyond those listed above as they are driven by environmental factors (such as climate change), available food supplies and mating patterns. Grayed-out selections indicate that the subject in question has not been reported in that particular territory. U.S. states and Canadian provinces / territories are clickable to their respective bug listings.
Butterfly and Moth Anatomy
Antennae: Butterflies and Moths have a pair of antennae on the head used as sensors.
Head: The head is home to the insect's eyes, antennae, and proboscis.
Thorax: Home to the three pairs of legs as well as vital internal organs.
Abdomen: Contains vital internal organs such as the heart(s) and reproduction facilities.
Forewing: The upper, forward wing pair used for flying.
Hindwing: The lower, rearward wing pair used for flying.
NOTE: Butterflies and Moths are part of the Lepidopteran order as they share many similarities.