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Pink Spotted Hawk Moth (Agrius cingulata)

The pink spotted hawk moth is a member of the family of hawk moths and was first described by Danish zoologist Johan Christian Fabricius in 1775.

Pink Spotted Hawk Moth

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Scientific Classification


  • Family: Sphingidae
  • Genus: Agrius
  • Scientific Name: Agrius cingulata

Description and Identification

Caterpillar

The final color of the larva may vary drastically; it can be brown, gray, green, or yellow. They are large, bulky, and have a horn. Black dorsolateral stripes run diagonally throughout their body, connecting to a series of black oval spots.

Pink Spotted Hawk Moth Saterpillar

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Pupa

After maturing, the caterpillars pupate underground during winter.

Pink Spotted Hawk Moth Pupa

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Adult Moth

Sexual Dimorphism: Present but not prominent.

Color and Appearance

The body is brown, but a series of pink and black bands can be seen on the abdomen in some individuals. A pair of blue eyespots is observable on the abdomen, as well as a brown line separating the two sides.

Forewing: When the wings are open, they are a mottled gray-black color with a series of spots seen near the end. When the wings are closed, the patterns remain observable.

Hindwing: When the wings are open, black and gray lines can be observed, alongside a fuchsia pink color. When the wings are closed, the pink color becomes hidden.

Average wingspan: 95-120 mm

Flight pattern: Erratic

Season: June-October; in some parts June to November

Agrius cingulata

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Eggs

Eggs are greenish and translucent, spherical, and 1mm in diameter.

Quick Facts

DistributionPrimarily in the Americas, including Argentina, Mexico, and the Caribbean, to the southeastern United States, Colorado, Michigan, Maine, Texas, southern New Mexico, Arizona, and southern California. In Canada, it is seen in British Columbia. In western Europe, mainly Portugal and the UK
HabitatOpen areas and tropical lowlands
Lifespan of Adults10-30 days
Host PlantsPawpaws appear to be most preferred; also sweet potato, morning glory, and jimsonweed
Adult DietNectar from flowers like moonflowers, morning glories, and petunias

Did You Know

  • The larva is considered a massive pest to the sweet potato, earning the nickname “sweet potato hornworm”.
Pink Spotted Hawk Moth Image

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Pink Spotted Hawk Moth Picture

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