As I mentioned in my post yesterday, there is a copse of trees where butterflies are having a ball just feeding on the flowers and flitting about between the sun and the shade. And I mentioned that if you are lucky you would see a Hummingbird Hawkmoth (Macroglossum stellatarum). Well yesterday I was more than lucky, I saw as many as six of these beautiful small moths feeding on the flowers of the Knapweeds and thistles.
They really are small at 20-24 mm and could be overlooked due to their size and flight characteristics. It’s just the glimmer of orange and hovering ability that really draws attention to the observant person. As their name implies, they are very similar to the hummingbirds in that they hover as they feed by sending their long tongue down to the flowers as you can see in the shots here. They only seem to stay for a second or two and zoom off to hover on another flower, thus not making them an easy target for the camera, however with some patients and fast autofocusing one can get lucky.
This is not the first time I have found this moth near to Picón. Last year, I found them a little further up the Guadiana River in the small canyon where I found that they blend in perfectly with the lichen owing to their superb camouflage. Here is a link to the blog entry about finding those first Hummingbird Hawkmoths.
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