Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Polyphemus Moth

While waiting for my son's soccer game to start, I usually walk the perimeter of the soccer field trying to find something interesting to shoot.  I often come across something worthwhile, whether it be some bees, snails, spiders or pretty flowers.  On one lucky day in the beginning of July, I fould the largest moth I had ever seen.  After some research, I discovered it was a Polyphemus Moth.

The Polyphemus Moth is one of the most widespread silkmoths and ranges from southern Canada southward throughout most of the lower 48 states.  It is a tan coloured moth with beautiful feathered antennae and has a wingspan averaging between 10 and 15 cm.  Now that's a lot of moth!  There is a small eyespot on the outside wing or forewing, which you can see in my photos.  On the hindwing near the middle there is a huge round or elliptical eyespot.  This moth didn't open up its wings for me, so I unfortunately do not have a shot of the impressive hindwing, but images of this can easily be found by googling this moth. 

I had spotted this moth resting on a tree trunk on the outskirts of a soccer field.  It was very patient and let me get very close to it without even moving.  I practically had my lens touching it at times and it never even budged.  Before moving in to get some macro shots, I took several pictures with my telephoto lens just in case the moth flew away with my approach.   Lucky for me it stayed!  Enjoy!!

A top down look at a Polyphemus Moth.  I was resting my camera on the tree for stability

Click the photo for a larger view!

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