Bee Hawk-moths are more agile than the bumble-bees they resemble.  They feed when flying, have long clubbed antennae and are much larger than the superficially similar bee-flies.

The Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth has reddish-brown bands on the wings and abdomen but this may appear black as the hairs wear off. Active in late-morning and early-afternoon sunshine, feeding on nectar of Honeysuckle in particular, but also Bugle, Ragged Robin, Rhododendron, louseworts and Aubretia.

The larvae can be seen from June to August before they overwinter as pupae just below the ground.

Size and Family

  • Family – Hawk-moths (Sphingidae)
  • Large Sized 
  • Wingspan Range - 40-48mm

Conservation Status

  •  UK BAP: Not listed
  •  Scarce (Nationally Scarce B)

Caterpillar Food Plants

Wild Honeysuckle (Lonicera periclymenum), but also occasionally on cultivated honeysuckles and Snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus).


Prefers foodplants in shrubby habitats, particularly in woodland and heathland.


  • Countries – England, Wales
  • Nationally Scarce B. It is restricted to small areas and uncommon in southern England and Wales, with strongholds in East Anglia and Lincolnshire, and scattered records in the West Midlands north to south Yorkshire
Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth by Paul Pugh

Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth

Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth by Tom Brereton-webBroad-bordered-Bee-Hawk-moth by Tom Brereton

Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth