Snowberry Clearwing (Hummingbird) Moth

Today is impossibly hot with blazing sun and a humidex of >40C … on the other hand, these conditions brought this wonderful moth out to play amongst our phlox flowers.

Hemaris diffinis

The moth is not quite as large as a Hummingbird but easy to confuse at a glance and its flight patterns are similar. They are about 32–51 millimetres (1.25–2 in). The moth’s wings lack the scales found in most other lepidopterans, particularly in the centralized regions, making them appear to be clear. It loses the scales on its wings early after the pupa stage because of its highly active flight tendencies. They fly during the daylight much like the other hummingbird moths, but it may also continue flight into the evening, particularly if it has found a good source of nectar.

Another common name for the species is the “Flying Lobster”