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(invertebrate zoology)
The single family of the lepidopteran superfamily Sphingoidea.



a family of hawk moths. They are of average and large size; the wingspan is 2 to 18 cm. They are characterized by a cigar-shaped body, narrow elongated forewings, and spindle-shaped antennae. The insects can fly with a velocity of up to 54 km/hr and “stand” in the air, sucking nectar from flowers with their long tongue while in flight. (The length of the tongue in the Madagascar hawk moth, Macrosila predicta, exceeds 25 cm.) Sphingidae caterpillars are always naked. They feed on leaves, stripping the shoots bare. There are about 1,200 species, which are found throughout the world. Most are found in the tropics; in the European part of the USSR there are 26 species, and about 40 are found in the Far East. Some members of the family Sphingidae are capable of long flights. (Daphnis nerii flies from the shores of the Black Sea to Finland.) The pupae winter in the soil. Some species are harmful to one or several closely related plants, most frequently woody plants. The pine hawk moth (Sphinx pinastri) and the eyed hawk moth (Smerinthus ocellatus) are among the harmful species in the USSR. The convolvulus hawk moth (Herse convolvuli) is useful in destroying bindweed in the southern Ukraine.


Kuznetsov, N. Ia. “Obzor semeistva Sphingidae palearkticheskoi i otchasti paleanarkticheskoi (kitaisko-gimalaiskoi) fauny.” Tr. Russkogo entomologicheskogo obshchestva, 1906, vol. 37, nos. 3–4.
Zhizn’ zhivotnykh. Edited by L. A. Zenkevich, vol. 3. Moscow, 1969.
Seitz, A. Die Gross-Schmetterlinge der Erde, section 1, vol. 2. Stuttgart, 1913.


References in periodicals archive ?
For example, in Viola cazorlensis (Violaceae), variability of size and shape of corolla lobes within one population leads to significant differences in the dissection of flower outlines; the day-flying hawkmoth pollinator can distinguish those shape differences and discriminate in favor of more dissected corollas, leading to measurable differences in fruit production (Herrera, 1993).
Even without the trap running, I was distracted by a fluttering at the back window and pleasantly surprised by the arrival of a lime hawkmoth, one of several dramatic species that take to the wing now.
The investigators studied two species each of bees, flies, butterflies, hoverflies, and hawkmoths.
Poplar hawkmoth, elephant hawkmoth and small angle shades were the temporary exhibits when I visit-ed.
Raguso says that intense whiffs of the perfume of the night-blooming datura he studies drive hawkmoths to start probing at patches of white.
Phylogeny and biogeography of hawkmoths (Lepidoptera: Sphingidae): evidence from five nuclear genes.
Numerous hawkmoths (Hyles lineata, Sphingidae) visited flowers in the population.
As hawkmoths fly toward the light, so she, whiteness, steps from the kitchen into the dark hallway.
The energetic demands of hovering flight require hawkmoths to forage for floral nectar.
Ellington's team documented wing movements of hawkmoths and the air currents they whip up.
The tests confirmed what had been shown before in hawkmoths.
Field studies in 2001 focused on the biodiversity of hawkmoths found at five locations in northwest Missouri.