As I watched this furry (yes, furry, not just feathered)
winged creature bop from flower to flower, I said to myself what most would
say: “What is that? Oh…it’s a hummingbird…wait…no!…it’s a moth??? Oh, slow
down, you, so I can get a closer look! Hmmm, it’s NOT a
hummingbird; but, it’s no moth I’ve ever seen…Ok, so WHAT IS IT?”
I actually guessed based on its appearance: a
After I snapped a few photos of this mysterious creature, I
did my research, and sure enough, it’s nickname is, indeed, Hummingbird Moth!
This particular species is called the Whitelined Sphinx and is part of the
sphinx moth family. They are very common to Colorado and mostly develop, as larvae,
on aspen, cottonwood, poplar and willow trees.
What fascinated me the most about these little creatures was
how much they resemble hummingbirds, not only in the way they fly and hover, but the
way they operate. These intriguing moths feed on the nectar of flowers in the same way
hummingbirds do: hovering with the body stationary by the blossom, wings beating
so fast as to be nearly invisible, flared “tail”, and having a long
proboscis (elongated appendage) that probes the blossom. The proboscis stays
coiled up like a garden hose until it is time to use it. When the moth
approaches a flower, it uncoils its proboscis and dips it deep into the flower
where the nectar is. In flight, the
wings create a soft buzzing, also like a hummingbird.
Who would’ve thought!!
Well, now that you mention it (or I mention it), Hummingbird Moth did make me think. Here we have before us the much used cliche’, “Things aren’t always what they seem”; but, how much more literal can we get when it comes to Hummingbird Moth? Why not take this creature’s “advice” and look a little closer at whatever is being presented to us in our lives–why not investigate a bit further?
We can use our own proboscis to our advantage. As we delve a little deeper into circumstances, we uncoil our proboscis at just the right time and gather as much data as possible. Once we have all the information, we may very well see that things truly aren’t what we had originally thought. As a result, we can make the appropriate adjustments in our thoughts and actions.
Might this be a lesson we are being presented with in the world circumstances?
Thank you, little trickster…Thank you, Hummingbird Moth…