Thursday, June 16, 2011

The scent of a lady.... moth!

I have never seen one of these before. Dan went to pick up a cheque from a couple blocks down from our house, and a moth had coincidentally landed on the cheque, so Dan brought it home to the kids.

This poor thing later got slammed by a nasty rain storm, so we relocated it under the window sill when we got home later that night. The next morning the moth was gone. We looked on the ground, and lo and behold - there were now 2! Mating on a leaf! Or as Muffin said "Mom, their butts are stuck together!"

How amazing nature is... for a male moth to have smelled her pheromones from so far away in the night, to locate her, hidden, behind our front steps!

The Polyphemus Moth (Antheraea polyphemus) is a North American member of the family Saturniidae, the giant silk moths.[1] It is a tan colored moth, with an average wingspan of 15 cm (6 inches). The most notable feature of the moth is its large, purplish eyespots on its two hindwings. The eye spots are where it gets its name – from the Greek myth of the Cyclops Polyphemus. The caterpillar of the Polyphemus Moth can eat 86,000 times its weight at emergence in a little less than two months. It is widespread throughout much of North America, from southern Canada to parts of Mexico.

How unfortunate for this Moth to call "here" home - when it could be in sunny Mexico!

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