Entomology (Study of Bugs)/Found chrysalis


I live in Hilo Hawaii and found this chrysalis under loose dirt in an old flower pot. I was wondering if you could tell me what sort of creature it is. Thank you

Dear Lottie - This is a pupa of a moth in the family Sphingidae (sphinx moths, hawk moths, hummingbird moths, etc.). There are at least two species in Hawaii that have pupae similar in appearance to yours: Daphnis nerii (see http://tinyurl.com/paueumm) and Theretra nessus (see http://tinyurl.com/nrclpb2). The larvae of many species of sphinx moth burrow into loose soil before undergoing pupation.

Hope this helps,

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Ed Saugstad


Will accept most questions in general entomology, including those related to medical entomology, taxonomy, ecology, arthropod surveillance, and pest management. If you are requesting a 'mystery bug' identification, PLEASE either attach an image to your question, or post an image on a web page (such as Flickr) so that I can look at it, as verbal descriptions frequently are insufficient for a definitive identification.


21 years in the U.S. Army as a medical entomologist; duties varied from surveillance of pest populations (including mosquitoes, cockroaches, ticks, and stored products pests) to conducting research on mosquito-virus ecological relationships and mosquito faunal studies. Ten years as a civilian analyst for the Department of Defense, primarily on distribution of vector-borne diseases worldwide. Limited experience on surveillance of agricultural insects in North Dakota and Indiana.

Entomological Society of America, West Virginia Entomological Society, Society for Vector Ecology, National Speleological Society, West Virginia Association for Cave Studies.

American Journal of Public Health, Contributions of the American Entomological Institute, Japanese Journal of Sanitary Zoology, Journal of Economic Entomology, Mosquito News, and Mosquito Systematics.

B.S. in entomology from North Dakota State University in 1963, M.S. in entomology from Purdue University in 1967.

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