The first time I spotted a hummingbird moth, my brain could not believe my eyes. Was it a baby hummingbird? A bug? Some weird cross between the two? These beauties hover just like a hummingbird, and their favorite flowers are bergamot, also known as monarda or bee balm – but in general, they seem to visit the same types of flowers hummingbirds favor.
There are two types of hummingbird moths – clearwing and hawk.
The photos above and below are both examples of clearwing hummingbird moths – so named because the center of their wings are actually clear, like a pane of glass. The clearwing hummingbird moth shown below was spotted at a friend’s house in Westerville this week. And that makes sense, because the most likely time of year to spot a hummingbird moth in Ohio is July-August. During these months, they can be seen visiting flowers throughout the day and around dusk.
The other type is called a hummingbird hawk moth. Check out this short video I took of both types of hummingbird moths while on vacation in Hilton Head, South Carolina:
And be sure to keep your eye out for these winged beauties in your own flower garden!
Drawn to this story like a moth to a… well, you know…? Keep reading about Patty’s Retreat.