Poplar Hawkmoth Laothoe populi

Sphingidae » Smerinthinae

Poplar Hawkmoth Laothoe populi

With a wingspan of 65 to 90mm  (almost 4 inches) this is one big moth. It has quite an odd way of positioning its wings and curving its abdomen when at rest, probably to camouflage itself amongst trees or shrubs during the day. It will flash its rufous hindwing spots if it feels threatened to ward off predators as can be seen in the image below.

Poplar Hawk-moth Laothoe populi

The adult flies May to July, and is very much attracted to light. They can be seen in various habitats, including woodland, parks and gardens. One of Britain’s commonest hawkmoths and widespread. The larva feeds on poplar, aspen and sallow.

Poplar Hawk-moth Laothoe populi

Poplar Hawk-moth Laothoe populi

Poplar Hawk-moth Laothoe populi

© Pete Hillman July 2017.

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Lime Hawkmoth Mimas tiliae

Sphingidae » Smerinthinae

Lime Hawkmoth Mimas tiliae

This is a large and impressive hawkmoth with its scalloped-edged forewings and olive-green and pinkish markings. The central dark forewing markings may be variable, and in some individuals may be joined to form a cross-band. Wingspan 55 to 70mm.

Lime Hawkmoth Mimas tiliae

The adult flies May to early July, and is attracted to light. It may be found resting on tree trunks or walls during the day. Found in various habitats where the larval foodplant grows, including broadleaved woodland, parks and gardens. A resident species, common and widespread in the southern half of England up to Yorkshire. The larva feeds on lime, elm and other deciduous trees. It overwinters as a pupa.

Lime Hawkmoth Mimas tiliae

Lime Hawkmoth Mimas tiliae

© Pete Hillman June 2013.