|Elephant Hawk Moth (Deilephila elpenor)|
So, here are the facts:
|Close up of head and bald patch!|
- They are found throughout Britain and Ireland as well as: Europe, Russia, China, India, Korea (not Taiwan though) and finally British Columbia.
- In most of where they live, the adults are found throughout May and July while the caterpillars are found through July and September.
- You're probably wondering what they do from September to May. Well they feed up and go into a chrysalis or pupa over the winter ready to emerge as moths in the spring.
- Now when I first saw the moth and heard its name I thought why is it called and elephant hawk moth? It doesn't look much like and elephant or a hawk. Well it gets the name from its caterpillar - I don't have a picture of one but you can see in the youtube video I found that it really does have something like a trunk for a nose!
- As you can see they are a big caterpillar and quite a tasty meal for a bird. To try and protect itself the caterpillar will suck its 'trunk' into its head and that makes it look like a little snake with four eyes. Sometimes this puts the birds off, well it must work often enough as there are still the moths around!
|Antennae and eye|
- The caterpillars seem to like fuchsia plants according to a few sites that I found, and when they are adults they have a sort of fuchsia colouring. I also read that they like Willowherb and Bedstraw.
- The adults drink nectar probably from plants like Honeysuckles as these release scent at night to attract moths.
- It seems the adults aren't safe from flying predators at night either as Bats quite like to eat them!
- I found out too that they have very good night vision, handy for a moth I'd have thought!
Anyway, short and sweet today as I'm off to my grandparents to watch Eurovision. If you'd like to find out a little more about them try these sites:
Hope you enjoyed,