Entomology (Study of Bugs)/moth??

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Question
moth??
moth??  
This was on my front door way, it sat there for 3 days, never really moved. I live in Indiana and have either never seen one of these or just not paid attention. It was really interesting to look at.

Answer
Hi, Beth:

You are correct, it is a moth!  Thank you for including the nice, detailed image.

This is a "Walnut Sphinx" moth, Amorpha juglandis .  Here is more about them:

http://bugguide.net/node/view/4144

Sphinx moths are often attracted to lights at night, but may remain in the immediate vicinity for the next day or so, relying on camouflage to protect them (dead leaf mimic in this case).

July 18-26 is National Moth Week, and you might want to participate if only by leaving your porch lights on to see what flies in.  Here's more information about that event:

http://nationalmothweek.org/

It is pretty easy to get hooked on "mothwatching," though.  Lots more diversity than in butterflies.

Hope you had a great Fourth of July, enjoy the rest of the summer!

Eric

Entomology (Study of Bugs)

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Eric R. Eaton

Expertise

I answer insect and spider identification questions ONLY. Attach images if possible. No "what bit me?", "what do I feed this bug in captivity?", or science fair project questions please. NO TECHNICAL QUESTIONS ABOUT INSECT PHYSIOLOGY.

Experience

Principal author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America. Professional entomologist employed previously at University of Massachusetts, Chase Studio, Inc., and Cincinnati Zoo; contract work for West Virginia Department of Natural Resources, Smithsonian Institution, and Portland (Oregon) State University.

Publications
Author, Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Missouri Conservationist magazine, Ranger Rick, Birds & Blooms, Timeline (journal of the Ohio Historical Society). I have contributed to several books as well.

Education/Credentials
Oregon State University, undergraduate major in entomology, did not receive degree.

Awards and Honors
One of the top 50 experts in all categories for AllExperts.com, 2009.

Past/Present Clients
Principal author of the Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, Smithsonian Institution (contract), Cincinnati Zoo (employer), Portland State University (contract), Chase Studio, Inc (employer), Arkansas Museum of Discovery (guest speaker). Currently seeking speaking engagements, leadership roles at nature festivals, workshops, and ecotours.

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