Scientific name: Smerinthus ocellata
May to July, with occasional partial second generation in the south from August to September. The pink hindwings are decorated with black and blue “eyes”, used to flash at predators.
The adults come to light, but do not feed.
They overwinter as shiny black/brown pupae, below or near the larval foodplant. The caterpillars can be seen from June to September and resemble the Poplar Hawk-moth caterpillar, apart from the bluish-coloured spike at the rear.
Size and Family
- Family - Hawk-moths (Sphingidae)
- Large Sized
- Wingspan Range - 70-80mm
- UK BAP: Not listed
Caterpillar Food Plants
Sallows, Apple (Malus domestica), wild and ornamental Crab Apple (Malus sylvestris), less common on poplars and Aspen (Populus tremula).
Gardens, orchards, woodland, suburban localities and places where willows grow e.g. parks, riversides, fens and scrub.
- Countries – England, Wales, Ireland
- Common. Well distributed throughout England and Wales as far north as Cumbria, local on Isle of Man, widely distributed but occasional in Channel Isles.