Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Look who's at my doorstep :) - Deilephila elpenor

Look who's at my doorstep :) - Deilephila elpenor
Maple Ridge, British Columbia, Canada
July 27, 2011
I've had some friends point me to websites that say it could possibly be a Dryocampa Rubicunda... but when I look at the images - besides the colour,furriness & size this one does look different. White legs, rather than purple, different wing shape & patterns, purple spots on back & a pointly end... hope you can help me with this beautiful moth :)

I am curious to know did the 100 mile fire wipe out your area?
wondering if this population is gone?

Look who's at my doorstep
WOW! What a beautiful creature! You are very lucky to see such an amazing creation! May I use the picture on my desktop?


no doubt about it altho i
darn near fainted when i saw it. it has apparantly been introduced and established in bc. holy cow i hope to see one in my lifetime!!!
lucky you!

Oh wow
That thing is incredible. The colors are like that Chickweed Geometer moth, but in a Sphingid-sized package and even more striking!

Moved from ID Request.

How about Deilephila elpenor?
surprised that it's not in the guide yet given that it's so striking! See here. I'll let others confirm. Nice find!

Thank you for your reply!
I was happily surprised to see how quickly a response came back :) Thank you for taking the time to figure this one out! She (or he) was such a beauty... and to have found her in daylight too was such a treat!

Elephant Hawk Moth
Definitely Deilephila elpenor "Elephant Hawk Moth" (reference Thomas Marent "Butterfly", pg 40-41. Gorgeous!

Thanks Tara!
Appreciate the confirmation - It seems like they are fairly new to British Columbia. I wonder why they were 'introduced' here as they are not originally found in Canada (was this by accident or on purpose?)...

Deilephila elpenor image
Hi Steph,
My Sphingidae of British Columbia webpage is at
I wish permission to post image of elpenor, credited to you, to that webpage and to the elpenor file.
I do not know if it was intentionally introduced by government in an effort to control a foodplant, or if it was accidentally introduced
through escapees that someone purchased from Europe or northern Africa.
The government did at one time introduce Hyles euphoriae in an effort to control leafy spurge (an invasive foodplant), but it does not seem logical that government would introduce a species to control a harmless host plant like Epilobium or Gallium.
Many of the Sphingidae are very strong flies, so I expect this species
will gradually find its way eastward and southward where there is Epilobium or fireweed. Hyles euphorbiae has certainly increased its range in North America.
Bill Oehlke
Please send a private email to

Thanks Bill!
Appreciate the info Bill, I'll message you when I get home regarding the photo :)

Amazing find! That is a stunning photo! Thanks for posting this beauty...but it is a mystery as to how it got there. Wow!