Elephant hawk-moth on foxglove flower
© David Chapman/Alam
Stealthy pollinators. Elephant hawk-moth
How come bees and butterflies get all the pollinator credit? Moths may not be as buzzy or flashy, but they get the job done, too. You’ll probably find out that most moths have feather-like antennas, whereas butterflies have ball- or club-shaped growths at the tip of their antennae. Of course, since most moths are nocturnal, you may want to leave a light on outside to see them.
The elephant hawk-moth in our photo will always see you, regardless of the available light. Not only does it have super-sensitive eyesight, but it can also see in colour — in fact, scientists say it was one of the first species they could prove had a nocturnal colour vision. We were fascinated to discover one reason for the elephant hawk-moth’s great eyesight – it uses a lot of energy flapping its wings to hover and feed on flowers, so it has to be efficient when looking for its next floral feast. Nature – what a problem-solver!