Sphecodina abbottii, or Abbott's sphinx, is a moth of the family Sphingidae. The species was first described by William John Swainson in 1821.

Abbott's sphinx
Scientific classification Edit this classification
Domain: Eukaryota
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Sphingidae
Genus: Sphecodina
S. abbottii
Binomial name
Sphecodina abbottii
(Swainson, 1821)[1]
  • Thyreus abbottii Swainson, 1821

Distribution Edit

It lives in eastern North America.

Biology Edit

Adults fly in May and June in the north, but have several generations in the south. Larvae feed on grapes (Vitis), Parthenocissus quinquefolia and Ampelopsis (Wagner 2005).

Description Edit

The underwings have a strong yellow band and in flight, the moth buzzes, appearing like a bee. The forewings are violet grey when fresh and have a "barklike pattern of swirling black lines" according to David Beadle and Seabrooke Leckie.[2] At rest, they raise their abdomens and are well camouflaged on tree bark, looking like a broken branch (Wagner 2005).

Early instars are a pale greenish white, with at first a horn, but later a brown knob near the hind end. Final instars (75 mm in length) come in two patterns: one has brown bands such that there are ten large pale green spots on the back and an eyespot on the rear. This form may mimic grapes. Others are completely brown, with a wood-grain patterning, and with the rear eyespot (Wagner 2005). In the final instar the knob looks a lot like a vertebrate eye, down to the white reflection spot. If it is pinched or poked, the larva squeaks and bites at the attacker (Wagner 2005).

Gallery Edit

References Edit

  1. ^ "CATE Creating a Taxonomic eScience - Sphingidae". Cate-sphingidae.org. Archived from the original on 2012-11-05. Retrieved 2011-10-26.
  2. ^ Beadle, David; Leckie, Seabrooke (2012). Peterson Field Guide to Moths of Northeastern North America. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt. p. 266. ISBN 9780547238487.
  • Wagner, David L. 2005. Caterpillars of Eastern North America. Princeton Univ. Press. p. 270

External links Edit