Elephant Hawk Moth

Mark Boddington mark_boddington at altavista.net
Wed Jul 29 18:39:01 EDT 1998

Hi Gaz,

The major foodplants of the Elephant Hawk Moth (Deilephila elpenor) are
willowherbs and bedstraws, particularly Rosebay Willowherb (at least around
Oxford and Colchester, the two places I regularly find them).  It is however
known to feed on a wide variety of other plants, including Fuchsia.  It is
my experience that the larvae are quite happy to be changed from one
foodplant to another, so choose whatever you have to hand.  Further
foodplants and more information can be found at the following URL:


If the larva is full-grown (some 8cm long) then there's a fairly good chance
that it's looking for a place to pupate seeing as it was wandering around
the beach.  Give it a paper towel along with the food - if it wants to spins
itself its somewhat flimsy cocoon then this gives it somewhere convenient to
construct it.

Hope this helps,

Gareth Morgan wrote in message <6pnpvd$sf2$1 at aristotelis.cytanet.com.cy>...
>My son has 'rescued' what I think is an elephant Hawk Moth larva.
>Unfortunately it was wandering around the beach (in Cyprus) so is probably
>infected with parasites. Does anyone know what plant it feeds off?  I'd
>to give it an even chance if possible.
>Any help would be greatly appreciated as I have already scoured the
>and found lots of info on Sphingidae but not on the larva food plants.
>from sunny (and sweltering) Cyprus
>gmorgan at cytanet.com.cy

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