Sunday, 9 July 2017

Humming Bird Hawk Moth

This is a first for me - whilst sat on the garden bench yesterday evening to watch the foxes.  The cubs skitted off when they became aware of my presence, but Mrs Fox settled on the raised bed at the other end of the garden and relaxed, in full sight of me.  She is comfortable in the garden, as long as I am more than 6 feet away from her.
At this time, a fast insect flew by and started to move around the Valerian flowers a few feet away from me.  After a few attempts to focus with my camera I could see that it was a Humming Bird Hawk Moth.  I could hear the wing beat and this little Lepidopteran was moving around like greased lightning, spending less than half a second on each flower.
I have seen dead and preserved examples of this moth, but this is the first time I have been able to photograph a live one.  They feed on  the wing, inserting their long proboscis into the flowers to drink the nectar.  The thing that impressed me was the noise of the wings and the speed of the moth.  It is a well focused and very agile creature.

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