Friday, May 16, 2008

Azalea Sphinx Moth (Darapsa choerilus)

(Photo taken 5/8/08)

Azalea Sphinx Moth (Darapsa choerilus) Hodges #7886

Range: Eastern United States, west to North Dakota and Texas, plus across southern Canada from Nova Scotia to British Columbia.

Season: Adults fly from June to August in the north (one brood); March to September in the south (two or more broods). In Louisiana there are as many as eight broods, beginning in March, with emergence peaks at 30-day intervals.

Food: Larvae feed on leaves of azalea (Rhododendron spp.), blueberry (Vaccinium spp.), sour-gum, and Viburnum species. Adults take nectar.

Life Cycle: One to several generations per year, depending on latitude. Larvae pupate in leaf litter at base of hostplant, binding several leaves together with a few strands of silk to form a loose flimsy cocoon.

Thanks to Eric Eaton at BugGuide for the ID.


Everything you ever wanted to know about Azalea Sphinx Moths (from breeding procedures to photos of pupae and larval stages) can be found on Mr. Bill Oehlke's webpage.



Tom Arbour said...

Very nice creature Marvin, I'll have to keep my eye out for these guys.


Tom said...

The marking are really good on this.. I should think spotting then at times is so hard. I am taking much more notice of moths now.. funny how seeing one or two pictures for others can get you interested in something you have not bothered with before.