Elephant hawk moths in Wrenthorpe

Two elephant hawk moth caterpillars were spotted today somewhat risking their lives making their way along a friend’s driveway at Wrenthorpe.  At this time of year they can be seen during the day looking for a hideaway in low vegetation or just under soil surface ready to overwinter as pupa.   When not disturbed, the larva have long, narrow trunk-shaped noses and this is how elephant hawk moths get their name.  The two sets of eye spots may act as a deterrent to predators.  These large caterpillars normally feed at night on rosebay willow-herb, bedstraws and in gardens, they are attracted to fuchsia. However, any damage to plants is minimal and they are not regarded as a problem.  The adult moths are on the wing after dark from May to July often visiting honeysuckle during the evening to feed.

Elephant Hawk Moth Caterpillers

Elephant Hawk Moth Caterpillers