Sphingidae is a family of moths (Lepidoptera), commonly known as
hawk moths, sphinx moths and hornworms, that includes about 1,200
species. They're distinguished among moths for their rapid, sustained
Some hawk moths, like the hummingbird hawk moth, HOVER in midair while they
feed on nectar from flowers and are sometimes mistaken for hummingbirds.
Sphingids have been studied for their flying ability, especially their
ability to move rapidly from side-to-side while hovering, called 'swing-
Some of the sphingids are some of the FASTEST flying insects, capable of
flying at OVER 50 km/hour (30 miles per hour). The normal wingspan is 35-150
Some species fly only for short periods of time around dusk or dawn, while
other species only appear later in the evening and others around midnight.
But such species may occasionally be seen feeding at flowers during the day.
As seen here, this Sphinx Moth was feeding on a brilliant sunflower during the middle of the day along the southern banks of Arizona's Verde River.
Taken on August 31, 2008 (Summer's almost gone ... :(
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