Elephant hawk-moth on foxglove flower
© David Chapman/Alam
The elephant hawk-moth feeding on a foxglove in our homepage photo will always see you, regardless of the available light. It has super-sensitive eyesight – in fact, scientists say it was one of the first species they could prove had nocturnal colour vision. This gold and pink creature can be spotted at dusk in gardens, woods and open countryside throughout Europe between May and August, though is most commonly found in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland. If you’re wondering about that name, the caterpillar of the elephant hawk-moth is said to bear a resemblance to an elephant’s trunk. They are also strong fliers whose ability to hover in position while feeding earned them the “hawk” part of their name. They use a lot of energy flapping their wings to hover and feed from flowers, so their eyesight is excellent to spot the next floral feast. Nature - what a problem-solver!