Rapid-beating wings and a furry body give the Hummingbird Moth the appearance of a small hummingbird, but this moth lacks the long, thin beak, which is one of the hallmarks of a real hummingbird. Instead, the Hummingbird Moth has a proboscis that reaches deep into flowers. It drinks the nectar of many kinds of blossoms and helps pollinate them as it wanders between plants. The moth is also a quiet flyer whereas a true hummingbird creates a low buzz when it flies. The wings of the Hummingbird Moth are mostly transparent with dark borders, which is another indicator that it is not a true bird. The head area is a yellow-green and the lower part of the body is brown with a broad yellow band near the end of the abdomen. It lacks feathers, but this moth certainly looks like it has tail feathers.
Hummingbird Moths love flower gardens and are likely to visit many plants while they are in the area. They can also be found in meadows and near forests. As a member of the Sphinx Moth family, Hummingbird Moths are daylight foragers that also feed at night. Adults are most active in late spring to early fall.
The larvae enjoy feeding on the leaves and stems of honeysuckle plants (vines as well as shrubs). Planting some in your yard may encourage the Hummingbird Moth adult to visit you more often. Look for its horned green caterpillar feeding on leaves.
General Characteristics Capability, Shape, Texture/Pattern, Benefits, Dangers
* MAP NOTES: The territorial heat map above showcases (in red) the states and territories of North America where the Hummingbird Moth may be found (but is not limited to). This sort of data is useful when attempting to see concentrations of particular species across the continent as well as revealing possible migratory patterns over a species' given lifespan. Some insects are naturally confined by environment, weather, mating habits, food resources and the like while others see widespread expansion across most, or all, of North America. States/Territories shown above are a general indicator of areas inhabited by the Hummingbird Moth. Insects generally go where they please, typically driven by diet, environmental changes, and / or mating habits.