~Click pic to enlarge~
Photo taken by dandoucette at the Baobeng Fiema monkey sanctuary in Ghana
Daphnis nerii is a large hawk-moth found in wide areas of Africa and Asia. It is a migratory species, flying to parts of eastern and southern Europe during the summer. The Daphnis nerii (Oleander Sphinx Moth or Orleander Hawk-Moth) is one of the most beautiful butterfly-like patterned moths on Earth.
The adults feed on nectar of a great variety of flowers. They have a preference for fragrant species like petunia, jasmine and honeysuckle. They are especially active in the twilight time, hovering over the flowers after sunset. The caterpillars feed mainly on oleander (Nerium oleander) leaves, a highly toxic plant to which toxicity they are immune.
The newborn caterpillars are pale blue. Their color changes to green as they grow. They have two spots resembling eyes on the forefront of their body.
The pupa is pale reddish or brownish-white and has a wax-like appearance. It lies directly on the earth, under moss or dry leaves.
H/t Project Noah