Date: 7/30/17 7:26 pm
From: Charlie <chaspatt...>
Subject: RE: [MASSBIRD] Re: hummingbird moth
Thanks for the rundown Josh. I am a little rusty on my sphinx moths. I was unaware of the feeding preference but it makes sense. With good rain (finally) our L. sempervirens is going to town and I see the adults on it all the time.

Charlie Patterson
Norwell, Ma

Sent From Middle Earth

From: Josh
Sent: Sunday, July 30, 2017 8:14 PM
To: massbird
Subject: Re: [MASSBIRD] Re: hummingbird moth

The two species of Hemaris sp. clearwing moths mentioned both feed on plants of the honeysuckle family as caterpillars. I’ve seen Snowberry Clearwing hornworms on Japanese Honeysuckle but they strongly prefer the native Coral (Lonicera sempervirens). BugGuide (a citizen science website for terrestrial arthropods) also mentions hawthorn, snowberry, and viburnum as larval hosts for the Hummingbird Clearwing, and snowberry, dogbane, and the native bush-honeysuckle Diervilla for the Snowberry. Massachusetts also has a third species, the Slender Clearwing (H. gracilis), which closely resembles the Snowberry, but whose hornworms feed on various species of blueberry and laurel.

For anyone interested in these, but not comfortable with the non-native Butterfly Bush, the adult hummingbird moths are also extremely fond of various species of Bee Balm (Monarda sp.). As are real hummingbirds (hey, look, I managed to mention an actual bird!), and also Monarchs.



Joshua S. Rose, Ph.D.
Amherst, MA

On Jul 30, 2017, at 7:33 PM, Catherine Fisher <catherineckx...> wrote:

Both species of hummingbird moths common in Massachusetts (hummingbird clearwing and snowberry clearwing) are related to tomato hornworms, but tomato hornworms are the larval form of the five-spotted hawk moth. Hummingbird moths and the five-spotted hawk moth are members of the sphinx moth family.

C. Fisher
Lee, NH

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