Hummingbird hawk-moths beat their wings at such speed they emit an audible hum. Their name is further derived from their similar feeding patterns to hummingbirds. They're found in Britain all summer long, especially in southern parts and in Ireland. Active in both sunny and overcast conditions, hummingbird hawk-moths are strongly attracted to flowers with a plentiful supply of nectar such as honeysuckle and buddleia. Studies reveal a remarkable memory, since they return to the same flowerbeds at the same time everyday.
Scientific name: Macroglossum stellatarum
The following habitats are found across the Hummingbird hawk-moth distribution range. Find out more about these environments, what it takes to live there and what else inhabits them.
Discover what these behaviours are and how different plants and animals use them.
Additional data source: Animal Diversity Web
Macroglossum stellatarum, known as the Hummingbird Hawk-moth or sometimes the Hummingmoth, is a species of Sphingidae. Its long proboscis and its hovering behaviour, accompanied by an audible humming noise, make it look remarkably like a hummingbird while feeding on flowers. It shouldn't be confused with the moths called hummingbird moths in North America, genus Hemaris, members of the same family and with similar appearance and behavior. The resemblance to hummingbirds is an example of convergent evolution. It flies during the day, especially in bright sunshine, but also at dusk, dawn, and even in the rain, which is unusual for even diurnal hawkmoths. Its visual abilities have been much studied, and it has been shown to have a relatively good ability to learn colours.
This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.