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Photo#150921
Catocala Moth - Agrius cingulata

Catocala Moth - Agrius cingulata
Madison, Dane County, Wisconsin, USA
October 3, 2007

Images of this individual: tag all
Catocala Moth - Agrius cingulata Catocala Moth - Agrius cingulata

Moved
Moved from Moths.

Looks like a Manduca to me
This moth is a sphinx moth, and is probably a Manduca sexta or a Manduca quinquemaculata, commonly known in their larval form as tomato and tobacco hornworms, which are considerable crop pests. These hornworms are also well-known in the entomology community for having a close personal relationship with a species of parasitoid wasps, which insert their eggs into the hornworms. When the eggs hatch, the wasp larvae use the caterpillar as a food factory, until each wasp pupates by popping out of a hole it creates in the caterpillar's skin, then weaving a cocoon for itself. It is not uncommon to find parasitized hornworms in a backyard garden during the summer--they are obvious by the colleciton of cocoons stuck to their backs. The caterpillars do not survive the parasitization, and the wasps are considered a form of natural pest control.

 
I do believe this is actually
I do believe this is actually Agrius cingulata, the Pink-Spotted Hawkmoth. A real beauty of a moth.

 
Pink-spotted hawkmoth
Yes. I see it! Now that I know what to look for, I can actually see the pink stripes on the abdomen in the photo of the moth in the window corner. Thanks for the ID.

 
Thanks for the correction!
But the Manduca story is still pretty cool!

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