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Cecropia Moth

Cecropia Moth
Photo Information
Copyright: Manyee Desandies (manyee) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 3089 W: 230 N: 6774] (23770)
Genre: Animals
Medium: Color
Date Taken: 2006-04-09
Categories: Insects
Camera: Canon Powershot S1-IS
Photo Version: Original Version
Theme(s): Butterflies & Moths [view contributor(s)]
Date Submitted: 2006-04-12 1:26
Viewed: 5647
Favorites: 1 [view]
Points: 48
[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note
Cecropia Moth
Hyalophora cecropia

Body is red with a white collar and white bands on the abdomen. Wings are dark brown with white hairlike scales giving a frosted appearance; forewings are red at the base. Crescent spots and the area outside the postmedian line are red on all wings.

Cecropia moths do not live long (about two weeks) because the adult cecropia cannot eat. In fact, they don't even have a mouth or proboscis! The only purpose of the adult stage is to mate and lay eggs.

Hyalophora cecropia, North America's largest silkmoth with a wingspan approaching six inches, flies in all Canadian provinces except British Columbia and Newfoundland. In the U.S., there are some highly localized populations reported in Washington and Utah, but generally the cecropia moth lives from the Rocky Mountains and east.

Cecropia moths tend to emerge in mid morning from relatively large cocoons and have little trouble slipping through the loose valves in both the inner and outer cocoons. The adults quickly climb to hang and inflate their wings.

Pheromones are scents, or smells, used by many creatures to attract a mate. Males cecropia moths have been marked and are known to have flown over seven miles in search of the wind-born female pheromone scent plume. After the couple separates the following evening, males are on the wing again and some males can successfully fertilized several females.

Large eggs with reddish brown mottling are deposited in short rows of three to six on host food plants. Black first instar larvae eat a portion of their eggshells and tend to be social, lining up side by side on the underside of a leaf. Second instar larvae with yellow/green bodies and black protuberances are also social and grow rapidly.

Third, fourth, and fifth instar larvae are similar in their spectacular appearance. Most larvae spend approximately one week in each instar (a growth period ended by a shedding of old skin) except the final one of two weeks where a total length of 4.5 inches is often reached.
Large cocoons are always fastened lengthwise to branches, stems, trunks of the host plant or neighboring locations. Sometimes a leaf wrap is used, but often the caterpillar will make its cocoon without the aid of any props. A loose valve is spun at the pointed top of the oblong cocoon and another valve is arranged at the top of a denser, inner cocoon.

This photo was taken at the Butterfly Exhibit at the
Conservatory of Flowers at the Golden Gate Park in San Francisco.


thor68, scottevers7, wkshelton, marhowie, ramthakur, phlr, liquidsunshine, Luc, metcher, suleesia, extramundi, TAZ, sranjan has marked this note useful
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ThreadThread Starter Messages Updated
To extramundi: Mothmanyee 1 05-15 01:44
To marhowie: No glassmanyee 1 04-12 11:12
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Critiques [Translate]

  • Great 
  • Dave Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 503 W: 43 N: 657] (2178)
  • [2006-04-12 3:15]

Too cool Manyee!
Great job!

Great details and colors.
Well done.

(Thanks for your comment on my 'Hippo Yawn')

Hi Manyee!
It's amazing shot with fantastic details. You did it great with perfect sharpness!

wow, this is cool,
looks like a painting.
very nice capture, manyee! :-)
good strong colors, great details -
i like the antennae.
the wings look a little grainy
were they like this?
well seen & done, thor.

Very good! nice shot my friend!

Hello Manyee!
Excellent colors and POV. Perfect composition. Great work!

Your tradition of excelent photos continue. ;-)

Hi Manyee,
Excellent shot on this Cecropia Moth. You have captured great colors and shown the amazing detail and wing pattern in this beauty.

what an amazing moth - beautiful capture, very well presented.

Hi Manyee, This is a great photo. the colors are realy incredible. POV. Details right on. Well done. TFS Kyle

Hiu ManYee,
Very nice colors and well composed. Luv those long fern-like antennae. Through glass right?
Excellent note, Well done!

Hello Manyee,
This is a colourful beauty moth. pov, dof, focusing are all great. I'm curious about when will I meet these beautiful moths? I don't remember that I saw any of them unfortunately. Thank you.

One doesn't get to see such species frequently. Those different looking antannae and colors and patterns on the wings make looking at this image a great experience.

p e r f e c t...

  • Great 
  • osse Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 955 W: 0 N: 89] (7805)
  • [2006-04-12 15:43]

Hi Manyee
Great details, sharpnes and colors.
Well done


Hi Manyee,
Good detail, colours and sharpness.
Composition and lighting are good. Good POV and framing.
Thanks for posting, enjoy the rest of the week.

  • Great 
  • EOSF1 Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1393 W: 119 N: 5267] (23955)
  • [2006-04-12 23:14]

What a moth ! So colorful it looks like a work of art. Good work with the very white background. Sharp and clear, well done Manyee !


  • Great 
  • sAner Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1455 W: 74 N: 1426] (4750)
  • [2006-04-13 2:58]

Beautiful picture Manyee. The colors are excellent and the details are sharp. Well done & TFS!


  • Great 
  • phlr Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1237 W: 130 N: 882] (2821)
  • [2006-04-13 5:30]

A big moth indeed!
Very good photo of this beauty!
Very beautiful colours!
Very good POV!
Very good on details too!

  • Great 
  • Luc Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1835 W: 301 N: 4287] (14767)
  • [2006-04-13 23:10]

Excellent photo.
Complete note as usual.
Thank you Manyee.
I am just refunding my debts.
I will write to you later.

Hi, Manyee.
One of the most interesting butterflies I have seen. These antennas! Good exposure and colors.

another stunning capture. Same wonderful painting-like quality. Would be great as a series of images on the wall.

I would never imagine you have so spectacilar moths in S.Francisco. Impressing deep colours and beautiful details.
I have seen other beautiful ones in you library... I will return with more time. Thanks very much Manyee, nice to go over your shots again :)

  • Great 
  • TAZ Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2241 W: 47 N: 3167] (10926)
  • [2006-11-03 6:54]

Wow ! How could I missed this impressive moth ? Wonderful species ! Nice diagonal composition. Beautiful colors and sharpness. Bravo mon amie.

Dear Manyee,
Beautiful moth with excellent details & colors. TFS.

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