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Bedstraw hawk-moth – Hyles gallii
Bedstraw hawk-moth – Hyles gallii,
is a moth of the family Sphingidae. The species was first described by S. A. von Rottemburg in 1775. Hyles gallii have a wingspan reaching 55 to 80 mm. In appearance, this species is very similar to Hyles euphorbiae. However, in H. gallii the red of the hindwings is not so extensive and the olive-colored band on the forewings is not interrupted. The Bedstraw Hawk-Moth – Fore wings olive brown, with a broad, irregular, whitish stripe along the middle; hind wings black at the base; then a broad pinkish-white band, quite white near the body, and bright pink about the middle; then a distinct black band, and then a grey margin; thorax and body olive-brown, a white line on each side of the thorax just at the base of the wings; this line runs on each side along the head just above the eye; sides of the body with black and whitish spots.
The caterpillar is smooth, bluish-green above, inclining to pink beneath, sometimes brown and sometimes black, but always having a pale, almost yellow, line down the middle of the back, and a row of ten conspicuous eye-like yellow spots, on each side; the head is green, brown, or black, according to the colour of the caterpillar, but the horn above the tail is invariably red. The chrysalis is brown, and is found in the sand. The caterpillar feeds in August and September, and the Moth appears about Midsummer.
These moths can be encountered at dusk feeding on flowers, but they are active by night up to the day light. The flight period extends from May to October usually in one generation, but in good years there can be a second generation.