‘True beauty show by nature’: Huntington man films rare hummingbird hawk-moth

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HUNTINGTON, Ind. (WANE) — Wayne Grigsby said he did not expect to discover a “true beauty show by nature” right in his family’s backyard.

Grigsby was in his brother’s backyard south of Huntington Monday when he noticed a flying bug, which he learned upon further research was a hummingbird hawk-moth. It was circling a purple flower bush that appeared similar to a petunia.

The siblings soon realized the creature was not going anywhere– and was not camera shy.

“I could not believe it stayed there and let me video it,” Grigsby said during a phone call with WANE 15. He added he was able to film about eight videos on his phone in the span of 30 minutes without disturbing the bug.

  • A Hummingbird Hawk-Moth (Macroglossum stellatarum) sucks the nectar of a buddleia blossom, Monday, Sept. 5, 2005 in a garden in Frankfurt, Germany. (AP Photo/Michael Probst)
  • A hummingbird hawk-moth hovers over purple flowers.
  • A hummingbird hawk-moth (Macroglossum stellatarum) drinks nectar as it hovers over a blossom of honey suckle in Nauen, Germany, Monday, June 26, 2017. (AP Photo/Ferdinand Ostrop)
  • An insect hovers above a verbena in the garden of the Philippsruhe castle in Hanau near Frankfurt, Germany, Thursday, Aug. 7, 2003.
  • Hummingbird hawk-moth hovers over a flower.

Hummingbird hawk-moths are actually insects, not birds, according to Birds and Blooms. You can try to tell the difference based on their size– the hawk-moth species is smaller, between one and two inches, while hummingbirds are usually between three and four inches long.

“Suddenly its sibling arrived and there were two of them feeding right next to my brother and I,” Grigsby said in an email to WANE 15. “It was amazing.”

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