The caterpillar is a dark brown-ish green, with bright yellow spots along the body and a red horn above the tail, usually only seen in years of high influxes, from July to September. The moth overwinters as a pupa, usually unsuccessfully in the UK (probably due to high rainfall).

Size and Family

  • Family - Hawk-moths (Sphingidae)
  • Large sized
  • Wingspan Range - 60-80 mm

Conservation Status

  • UK BAP: Not listed
  • Immigrant

Caterpillar Food Plants

Bedstraws (Galium spp), Rosebay Willowherb (Chamerion angustifolium), madders and fuchsias. 

Habitat

Coastal, breeding on sand dunes, though can be found inland on waste ground

Distribution

  • Countries - England, Scotland and Wales
  • Immigrant. Widespread but uncommon/recorded all over UK, usually in small but fairly regular numbers, although occasionally in large numbers following a long period of absence or scarcity. Resident in Europe (east of southern France, north as far as Denmark/southern Scandinavia and Russia.
Bedstraw Hawk-moth

Bedstraw Hawk-moth

Bedstraw Hawk-moth

Bedstraw Hawk-moth

Bedstraw Hawk-moth

Bedstraw Hawk-moth