September 2017 – wildlife, Elephant Hawk Moth

 

Interesting sighting by Val Leaver, Ivy Cottage, at the bottom of Black Lane.   Well spotted Val.
“Spotted this in the garden the other day (outside the back door) so thought it was worth a mention as a different sort of wildlife on Black Lane.
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Elephant Hawkmoth Caterpillar – 2 photos just to prove it is alive!
Also have a few more pics and some video as it obligingly  decided to move.”
Val
Editorial Notes from the Internet:
The caterpillar turns into a chrysalis and then emerges as a beautiful moth – see photo below.
 Scientific name:  Deilephila elpenor

Size:  Wingspan approximately 70mm

Distribution:  Found throughout most of England, Wales and Ireland. In Scotland they are mainly found in the south and west

Months seen:  May to July.  The large caterpillars are seen from July to September

Life span:  Adult moths live for up to 5 weeks

Habitat:  Gardens, waste ground and woodland clearings

Food:  Nectar. The caterpillars feed on bedstraws, willowherbs and in gardens they feed on fuchsias, and gooseberry

Special features:  Large Elephant hawk-moths are one of the most brightly coloured moths found in the UK.  Often reported as a “pink butterfly”.

elephant hawk moth