Deilephila porcellus

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Small elephant hawk-moth
Deilephila porcellus-01 (xndr).jpg
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Sphingidae
Genus: Deilephila
Species: D. porcellus
Binomial name
Deilephila porcellus
(Linnaeus, 1758)[1]
  • Sphinx porcellus Linnaeus, 1758
  • Theretra porcellus clara Tutt, 1904
  • Pergesa porcellus wesloeensis Knoch, 1929
  • Pergesa porcellus sus O. Bang-Haas, 1927
  • Pergesa porcellus sinkiangensis Chu & Wang, 1980
  • Pergesa porcellus rosea Zerny, 1933
  • Pergesa porcellus porca O. Bang-Haas, 1927
  • Pergesa porcellus kuruschi O. Bang-Haas, 1938
  • Pergesa porcellus flavocincta Wize, 1917
  • Pergesa porcellus cingulata O. Bang-Haas, 1934
  • Metopsilus porcellus galbana Gillmer, 1910
  • Metopsilus porcellus colossus A. Bang-Haas, 1906
  • Eumorpha porcellus gissarodarvasica Shchetkin, 1981
  • Deilephila porcellus warneckei Capuse, 1963
  • Deilephila porcellus suellus Staudinger, 1878
  • Deilephila porcellus songoricus Eitschberger & Lukhtanov, 1996
  • Deilephila porcellus sibirica Eitschberger & Zolotuhin, 1997
  • Deilephila porcellus kashgoulii Ebert, 1976
  • Deilephila porcellus decolor Cockayne, 1953
  • Choerocampa porcellus lutescens Cockerell, 1887

Deilephila porcellus, known as the small elephant hawk-moth, is a moth of the family Sphingidae. It is found in Europe, North Africa and Western Asia.

Deilephila porcellus - MHNT

The wingspan is 45–51 millimetres (1.8–2.0 in). The moth flies from May to July depending on the location.The fore wings are ochreous with a faint olive tinge; the front margin is edged and blotched with pinkish, and there is a broad but irregular band of the same colour on the outer margin. The hind wings blackish on upper margin, pinkish on outer margin, and ochreous tinged with olive between. The fringes are chequered whitish, sometimes tinged with pink. The head, thorax, and body are pinkish, more or less variegated with olive; the thorax has a patch of white hairs above the base of the wings. Highly variable in colouration. In drier and warmer and arid areas of Asia Minor and Central Asia the pink colouration is absent. f. rosea Zerny is intermediate, f. indistincta Tutt,is pinkish grey, f. suellus is yellowish sandy buff.

The larva is greyish brown or darker grey in colour, merging into yellowish brown on the front rings. The head is greyer than the body. The usual sphingid horn is absent, and in its place there is a double wart.In the early instars the caterpillar is pale greyish green with blackish bristles, and the head and under surface are yellowish.

The larvae feed on Galium and Epilobium.


In Europe coastal areas, heaths and meadowland edges where Galium is present. Up to 1600m in the Alps and Spain but in North Africa, Turkey up to 2000m.In central Iran and Central Asia open, arid montane forest, or scrub. Usually found at 2000m. to 2500m.


  1. ^ "CATE Creating a Taxonomic eScience - Sphingidae". Retrieved 2011-10-26. [permanent dead link]

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