Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth

©Margaret Holland

Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth

©Derek Moore

Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth

Scientific name: Hemaris fuciformis
The Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth does, indeed, look like a bee! A scarce moth, mainly of Central and Southern England, it feeds on the wing and can be seen during spring and summer.

Species information

Statistics

Wingspan: 4.0-4.8cm

Conservation status

Common.

When to see

May to August

About

The Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth is a large, day-flying moth of open woodlands and clearings. It is a relatively scarce species, with a restricted distribution, but has strongholds in East Anglia nad Lincolnshire. The adult is on the wing from May to July, and feeds while flying on flowers like Wild Honeysuckle and Snowberry. So-named for its resemblance to a bumblebee, it is far more agile and much larger. The caterpillars appear from June to August and overwinter as pupae below the ground.

How to identify

The Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth does like a bit like a bumblebee. It has reddish-brown bands across its golden abdomen that can change to black as the hairs wear off. It also has reddish bands on its translucent forewings and long, clubbed antennae.

Distribution

Mainly found in Southern and Central England, scattered distribution elsewhere.

Did you know?

The Broad-bordered Bee Hawk-moth looks similar to the Narrow-bordered Bee Hawk-moth, but, as its name suggests, has a broader dark band on the edge of its forewings.

How people can help

The Wildlife Trusts manage many woodland nature reserves sympathetically for the benefit of all kinds of butterflies, including the Speckled Wood. A mix of coppicing, scrub-cutting, ride maintenance and non-intervention all help woodland wildlife to thrive. You can help too: volunteer for your local Wildlife Trust and you could be involved in everything from traditional forest crafts to surveying for butterflies.