June 24, 2021
It's time for the Thursday edition of #BenInNature presented by our friends at Carter Bank & Trust!
Here's something cool that I spotted this week in the pollinator garden right in front of VMNH: Hemaris thysbe, the hummingbird clearwing moth!
There are four different species of Hemaris that can be found in North America. Back in April we looked at Hemaris diffinis, the snowberry clearwing moth, which is black and yellow and strongly resembles a carpenter bee or bumblebee. Hemaris thysbe is probably the most popular (and arguably the most attractive) of the North American hummingbird moths, and with its green and red coloration, it can easily be mistaken for a ruby-throated hummingbird (Archilocus colubris) when it buzzes by!
These moths have a widespread distribution across the U.S., but they're most abundant in the east. In the south, these moths can be spotted on the wing from March through June and August through October. They're commonly found in second-growth forests, meadows, and cultivated gardens. They pollinate a variety of garden flowers and are also the primary pollinator for a few species of orchids!
Social distancing can be difficult, but it presents a great opportunity to become reacquainted with nature. In this series of posts, Administrator of Science Ben Williams ventures outdoors to record a snapshot of the unique sights that can be found in the natural world. New updates are posted Monday - Friday, with previous posts highlighted on the weekends. This series of posts is made possible thanks to the support of VMNH Corporate Partner Carter Bank & Trust (www.cbtcares.com).
NATURE PHOTO IDENTIFICATIONS
If you discover something in nature that you would like help identifying, be sure to message us right here on Facebook with a picture (please include location and date of picture) and we'll have our experts help you identify it!