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Species Smerinthus jamaicensis - Twin-spotted Sphinx - Hodges#7821

5th instar Smerinthus jamaicensis light green color morph - Smerinthus jamaicensis Unidentified Moth-2-20120531 - Smerinthus jamaicensis Moth - Smerinthus jamaicensis Smerinthus jamaicensis - male Twin-spotted Sphinx Moth - Smerinthus jamaicensis - male Could this be a sphinx? - Smerinthus jamaicensis 4/10/19 moth - Smerinthus jamaicensis Smerinthus jamaicensis
Show images of: caterpillars · adults · both
Kingdom Animalia (Animals)
Phylum Arthropoda (Arthropods)
Subphylum Hexapoda (Hexapods)
Class Insecta (Insects)
Order Lepidoptera (Butterflies and Moths)
Superfamily Bombycoidea (Silkworm, Sphinx, and Royal Moths)
Family Sphingidae (Sphinx Moths)
Subfamily Smerinthinae
Tribe Smerinthini
Genus Smerinthus
Species jamaicensis (Twin-spotted Sphinx - Hodges#7821)
Hodges Number
Synonyms and other taxonomic changes
Smerinthus jamaicensis – (Drury, 1773)
Common (1)
Wingspan 50-70 mm (2); 45-83 mm
Adult: male forewing gray with black and white markings; female forewing yellowish-brown with dark brown and white markings; thick dark bar runs from dark AM line to pale PM line; forewing outer margin unevenly scalloped; hindwing mostly reddish with pale yellow border and nearly straight costal margin; large blue spot near anal angle divided by black bar, giving the appearance of two blue spots - hence the common name, Twin-spotted Sphinx

Larva: body granulose, pale yellow or bluish-green with cream-colored and occasionally red markings; head triangular, light green with cream-colored band running to vertex; caudal horn attenuate, nearly straight, usually extending beyond rump, often bluish or black dorsally; thorax with very faint subdorsal line (in One-eyed Sphinx (S. cerisyi), subdorsal stripe well-defined and runs length of body)
[description adapted from Caterpillars of Eastern Forests]
United States east of the Rockies, and southern Canada from Newfoundland to British Columbia and southern Yukon
(absent from US west coast, extreme southern Texas and Florida, and Northwest Territories and Alaska)
various brushy and forested habitats, suburbs, riparian areas; adults are nocturnal and come to light
adults fly from April to October (2) in the south; June to August in the north
larvae from June to November
larvae feed on leaves of apple, ash, birch, elm, plum, willow (2); peach, willow (1); preferred foodplants are willow and poplar [Caterpillars of Eastern Forests]
adults do not feed
Life Cycle
up to five generations per year in Louisiana; usually two generations per year in mid-latitudes; one generation in the north
Larva; adult
See Also
The black bar dividing the blue spot on the hindwing distinguishes this species from others that also have blue spots on the hindwing. (2)
compare images of related species at CBIF
Print References
Arnett, natural history (page 774) and B&W photo (figure 27.245) (1)
Covell, Plate 6, #4, and page 37 (2)
Powell, J. A. & P. A. Opler, Moths of Western North America, p. 243, Pl. 39.3. (3)
Salsbury, p. 325--photo of specimen, adult (4)
Internet References
distribution in Canada list of provinces and territories (CBIF)
Works Cited
1.American Insects: A Handbook of the Insects of America North of Mexico
Ross H. Arnett. 2000. CRC Press.
2.Peterson Field Guides: Eastern Moths
Charles V. Covell. 1984. Houghton Mifflin Company.
3.Moths of Western North America
Powell and Opler. 2009. UC Press.
4.Insects in Kansas
Glenn A. Salsbury and Stephan C. White. 2000. Kansas Dept. of Agriculture.