Click image for larger version
We photographed this creature in Hounslow, West London, UK, in the summer of 1998, and wondered what it was - we've not seen a moth this large before.
August 2000 - An authoritative answer from George Beccaloni at the Natural History Museum, London, UK has been forwarded to us by Liz and Jon Maidment.
In May 1999, we received this email (thanks to Thomas Longmore and John Snyder)
Date: Tue, 01 Aug 2000 14:38:35 +0100
To: Jon Maidment [email removed]
From: George Beccaloni [email removed]
Subject: Re: query
Your photo is of an Elephant Hawk-moth (Deilephila elpenor).
It is a fairly common species in the London area, although
not often seen unless you are looking for it.
The larva feeds on willowherb, bedstraw etc.
Thanks to those that submitted ideas.
From: John Snyder [email removed]
To: thomas [email removed]
Date: 28 May 1999 14:36
Subject: Re: moths resent
Thomas, I don't know the European moths
very well at all. It certainly appears
to be a member of Family Sphingidae.
When I looked at a couple of web sources
for British and Continental sphingids,
the closest I could come up with was:
Theretra alecto. But it is described as
being from the warmer climates.
A photo of that animal is to be found at :
I doubt that this helps, but it's worth a try.
Greenville, SC (USA)