Backyard Nature Wednesday: Hummingbird moth
I was sitting on my patio just at dusk one afternoon last week when I noticed movement in the big sprawling datura plant next to the patio.
Anyway, on this day, there was something moving around in those blossoms. I thought at first it was a hummingbird, although it was a bit late in the day for them, but when I got up to look, I realized that it was an imposter. In fact, it was a hummingbird moth.
It flies during the daylight hours but is particularly active late in the day. It often feeds from night blooming plants like the datura, and the ones that I observe in my yard seem to have a particular affinity for members of the nightshade family.
This interesting moth is found throughout much of the United States. It is a migratory species and is most common in the eastern United States. It has a variable appearance, but the ones that I commonly see in my backyard look like the one in the image above.
Here is a video of the hummingbird moth in action.