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Hummingbird clearwing moth

 A hummingbird clearwing moth, Hemaris thysbe
Andy Reago and Chrissy McClarren [CC BY 2.0]
/
Wikimedia Commons
A hummingbird clearwing moth, Hemaris thysbe

Hemaris thysbe, the hummingbird clearwing, is a moth of the family Sphingidae (hawkmoths). Coloration varies between individuals, but typically the moth is olive green and burgundy on its back, and white or yellow and burgundy on the underside. Its wings are transparent with a reddish-brown border. It has light-colored legs, which combined with the lack of striping on the underside is diagnostic. Beating its wings rapidly, H. thysbe hovers to collect nectar from a variety of flowers. The combination of its appearance and its behavior commonly leads to it being confused with a hummingbird or bumblebee. It is found in a large portion of North America, with a range extending from Alaska to Oregon in the west and from Newfoundland to Florida in the east.

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Rudy Mancke served as naturalist and co-host of South Carolina ETV's NatureScene, which began its long run in 1978. His field trips, broadcast nationwide, have earned him a legion of dedicated viewers. Rudy's knowledge of the complex inner-workings of different ecosystems and his great admiration for the natural world make him the perfect guide. In fact, the National Wildlife Federation and the Garden Club of America honored his commitment to resource conservation with special awards. Since retiring from SCETV, Rudy has gone on to teach at the University of South Carolina, Columbia.