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White-lined Sphinx Hummingbird Moth

White-lined Sphinx Moth

The White-lined Sphnix Moth (Hyles lineata) is large and has a stout furry body with a brown head. Their forewings are mostly brown with a thick white line from the base of the head toward the tip of the wing. Six thin white lines protrude from the thick white line.

Hyles lineata is one of the most abundant hawk moths in North America, and its range extends from Central America to southern Canada through Mexico and most of the United States. It is often seen in deserts, gardens and suburbs.

Adults usually fly at dusk, during the night, and at dawn, but they will also fly during the day (see photos below).

It hovers over flowers and is sometimes mistaken for a hummingbird. Many refer to it as a "Hummingbird Moth" due its swift flight patterns.

Wing Span: 2 7/16" - 3 9/16"

Host plants: Four O'Clocks, apple, evening primrose, elm, tomato, purslane and others

White-lined Sphinx Moth gathering nectar from Purple Verbena
White-lined Sphinx Moth gathering nectar from Purple Verbena

White-lined Sphinx Moth
White-lined Sphinx Moth

White-lined Sphinx Moth showing its long proboscis
White-lined Sphinx Hummingbird Moth

White-lined Sphinx Moth Caterpillar ... these have a wide range of color variations but show consistent coloration as an adult butterfly. The caterpillar is black with orange spots arranged in lines down the whole body. An orange or yellow horn protruding from the back of the body is a distinguishing characteristic of Hyles lineata caterpillars. The horn, though dangerous looking is not a stinger, and the caterpillars are not harmful to humans.
White-lined Sphinx Moth Caterpillar

 

 

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