Hyles gallii

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Bedstraw hawk-moth
Hyles gallii kz.jpg
Hyles gallii feeding
Not evaluated (IUCN 3.1)
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Lepidoptera
Family: Sphingidae
Genus: Hyles
Species: H. gallii
Binomial name
Hyles gallii
(Rottemburg, 1775)[1]

See text

Hyles gallii (bedstraw hawk-moth, galium sphinx) is a moth of the family Sphingidae.

Similar species[edit]


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 hind wings is not so extensive and the olive-colored band on the forewings is not interrupted. 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.

The larva can reach a length of 70 to 80 millimeters and are variably. A variant is olive green with yellow spots. Another version is black with yellow spots and red head. The colour of the larva darkens before pupation. They feed on fireweed (Epilobium angustifolium, Epilobium montanum), on bedstraw (Galium verum and Galium mollugo) and various other plants (Chamaenerion angustifolium, Clarkia, Fuchsia, Circaea, Plantago major, etc.). They can be found from July to September.

The following information was taken from the public-domain The Illustrated Natural History of British Moths (1869) by Edward Newman.

"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."


Habitat of Hyles gallii. La Thuile, Italy at abt. 2700 m a.s.l.

This species prefers sandy or calcareous places, sunny heath, plantations, warm forest edges and wherever else it could find the host plants. These moths can be found in the Alps up to 2700 meters a.s.l..


Hyles gallii is present in North America, in Europe to the Arctic Circle, in Central Asia and in Japan.


  • Sphinx gallii von Rottemburg, 1775
  • Sphinx galli Denis & Schiffermüller, 1775
  • Deilephila canadensis Guenée, 1868
  • Deilephila chamaenerii Harris, 1839
  • Deilephila galii Kirby, 1892
  • Deilephila intermedia Kirby, 1837
  • Deilephila oxybaphi Clemens, 1859
  • Sphinx epilobii Harris, 1833
  • Celerio galii Kuznetsova, 1906
  • Celerio gallii chishimana Matsumura, 1929
  • Celerio gallii flavescens Closs, 1920
  • Celerio gallii grisea Tutt, 1904
  • Celerio gallii grisescens Bandermann, 1932
  • Celerio gallii heliophila Eichler, 1971
  • Celerio gallii incompleta Tutt, 1904
  • Celerio gallii lata Tutt, 1904
  • Celerio gallii nepalensis Daniel, 1961
  • Celerio gallii pallida Tutt, 1904
  • Celerio gallii postrufescens Lempke, 1959
  • Celerio gallii sachaliensis Matsumura, 1929
  • Celerio gallii scholzi Stephan, 1924
  • Celerio gallii stricta Tutt, 1904
  • Celerio gallii testacea (Wladasch, 1933)
  • Celerio gallii tibetanica Eichler, 1971
  • Deilephila gallii cuspidata Fritsch, 1916
  • Deilephila gallii dentata Gschwandner, 1912
  • Deilephila gallii lutea Gschwandner, 1912
  • Deilephila gallii maculifera Klemensiewicz, 1912



  • A. R. Pittaway: The Hawkmoths of the western Palaearctic. Harley Books 1993, ISBN 0-946589-21-6
  • P.C. Rougeot, P. Viette, Guide des papillons nocturnes d'Europe et d'Afrique du Nord, Delachaux et Niestlé, Lausanne 1978.

External links[edit]