Swifts (Moths Not Birds)

Orange Swift Hepialus sylvina

Orange Swift Hepialus sylvina

Hepialidae, known as Swift Moths or Ghost Moths, is a primitive group of moths, and there are around 500 species worldwide, and just 5 species in the UK. They have elongated wings which when at rest they hold almost vertically against their bodies. The adults have no functional probosis, so are unable to feed. They also have very short antennae. The caterpillars live under ground feed on the roots of plants, and remain so for up to two years where they will eventually pupate.

Orange Swift Hepialus sylvina

Orange Swift Hepialus sylvina

Both these featured species are often attracted to light and can be seen in various habitats including parks and gardens, often during early dusk. Both are common and widespread.

Common Swift Hepialus lupulinus

Common Swift Hepialus lupulinus

Common Swift Hepialus lupulinus

Common Swift Hepialus lupulinus


Top images August 2011, and bottom images June 2012, rear garden, Staffordshire. ยฉ Pete Hillman 2011 and 2012.

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6 thoughts on “Swifts (Moths Not Birds)

  1. Dear Pete

    How beautifully nature gives dresses to its children – and many sorts of mothes like these are defending with their dresses not to be seen by its natural enemies ๐Ÿ™‚

    Thanks for all these interesting pieces of information ๐Ÿ™‚
    Nice time to you
    Didi

    Liked by 1 person

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