Hummingbird moth? Check

Birders have something they call a “life list,” which I assume is their mental (or literal) checklist of bird species they hope to see/photograph in their lives. My life list pretty much includes anything and everything. I want to see it all. Today I got to check two more “yets” off of my list – a hummingbird moth, which I didn’t even realize was a hummingbird moth until I looked at the photos on my computer, since they look a bit like over-size bumble bees, and a northern water snake, which freaked me right out. I was sitting beside this pond, right beside the water, photographing dragonflies and damselflies and such, when this banded snake swims stealthily through the water about, oh, two feet from me, and never having seen one of these bad boys before, I thought “Water moccassin! Cottonmouth! Run for the hills!” but I’d been sitting cross-legged for some time and had to settle for scuttling backwards like a frightened crab. When I was safely on higher ground, I waited to see whether I could spot him again, but no such luck. Just a weird, unidentifiable dead thing in the water with a weird, unidentifiable bug-like thing eating it. Gross.

DamselflyWater lilyWater lily

Northern water snakeHummingbird mothHummingbird moth



4 thoughts on “Hummingbird moth? Check

    • I’ve seen pictures of it but never seen one myself ’til today. His wings go a billion miles an hour, just like a hummingbird’s, except that I never saw him stop at any time, and I have seen hummingbirds sit to eat or sit to rest.

  1. Yep, that is one freakish moth.

    Incidentally – usually a birder’s “life list” is a list of all the species he/she has actually seen in his/her lifetime, not ones that he/she hopes to see someday. It’s for bragging purposes. “What, your life list is only at 468? I broke 500 ages ago!” That sort of thing. Birders have to feed their egos somehow. :)

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