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What can you tell me about this insect? There seems to be

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What can you tell me...
What can you tell me about this insect? There seems to be hundreds in the Midwest this spring. I see them during the day around flowers. They don't seem to sleep or hid like other moths, if that is what it is.
Submitted: 5 years ago.Category: General
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5/4/2012
Expert: Martin, Engineer replied 5 years ago
Martin
Martin, Engineer
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 4,971
Experience: i'm 41 and i never stopped studying and experimenting
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Hello. insect can be really hard to identify by description alone, do you have a picture of one of those?

I would be tempted to say it may be mayfly
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mayfly
But without pictures it's a wild guess.
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Expert: Anna, Teacher, writer, biologist replied 5 years ago
Anna
Anna, Teacher, writer, biologist
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 11,656
Experience: Great research skills, variety of work experiences, teaching experience.
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Hello,

Since you described this insect as looking like a moth, but being out in the daytime, and hovering near flowers, I am almost certain you are seeing skipper butterflies. They come in several different colors, but most are rather plain. This spring there have been several population explosions of various butterflies in the Midwest, and the skippers are one of them. I have dozens in my own flowers. Here is a photo for you to compare:

graphic

Most skippers are shades of brown, gold, yellow, or orange, but all have the similar body shape. If you look at the antennae, you'll see that they are like those of a butterfly, rather than fuzzy like a moth. If you have more questions about this, let me know by clicking on REPLY.

Anna
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
I am not an expert, but his is not a butterfly it is a moth of some kind. I have a picture, but the site will not give me a option to send it.
Expert: Anna, Teacher, writer, biologist replied 5 years ago
It's supposed to work to upload a photo by clicking on REPLY, then at the top of the area where you would type is a tool bar with icons. Click on the little paper clip icon (it's right next to the YouTube icon). Instructions will pop up. On some browsers, this doesn't work. if that happens, you can put your photo on one of the free photo sharing websites, such as www.photobucket.com. Then come back here and paste the link to your picture in a REPLY.

I'll watch for the photo.

Anna
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
OK...let's see if this works.
Expert: Anna, Teacher, writer, biologist replied 5 years ago
I'm sorry, but no photo came through. Can you tell me what color the moths are?

How big are they - the wingspan when wings are open?

You could also try one of the photo-sharing sites I mentioned above. Or, you can send your photos here:

http://www.justanswer.com/help/contact.aspx

Ask them to send them on to me (Anna MsAM). Thank you.

Anna
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
They are mostly brown/gray? You know the moth color...hard to explain any better. I replied to your last e-mail through MSN and asked them to pass two pictures along to you ... lets see if that works. I applaud you for your persistence.
Expert: Anna, Teacher, writer, biologist replied 5 years ago
Well, we'll see if it works. I hope it will. I am extremely interested in butterflies and moths - they are a hobby of mine, so I'm curious to know what you have, too. In the meantime, here are pictures of a few of the more common Midwestern day-flying moths. Let me know if it is any of them:

graphic

graphic

graphic

You may be interested to know that there are thousands of species of moths in North America and they come in many different sizes, shapes, and colors - even purple and pink. when we finally get around to identifying yours, I'll give you information on some of the most interesting.

Anna
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Expert: Martin, Engineer replied 5 years ago
Hello again, i see you opened another post and Cher answered you there. If it's still not the answer, try to use http://www.wikisend.com/ to upload your picture and post us the sharing link.

I posted in here so that Anna know that you also opened another post. Always try to keep the conversation in the original post.
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Customer reply replied 5 years ago
I tried to keep it in the original post, but the system is not letting me post a picture under the "general" category. So, thinking it may be pilot error when the original post was put up, I tried again. Anna and I are working on it. Thank you!
Customer reply replied 5 years ago
Anna, I think it is the 1st one you posted. The one on the green leaf. there are hundreds of them in the area (Sioux City, Iowa; South Dakota and Nebraska). I am sure the extremely mild winter we had this past season has a lot to do with it.
Expert: Anna, Teacher, writer, biologist replied 5 years ago
Thank you. That is a moth in the Sphingidae genus. Within the genus, there are a number of species, ranging in size from quite small to the large hummingbird moth (which actually looks like a hummingbird). Common names include sphinx moths and hawk moths. They feed on nectar from dawn until dusk. I've found they especially like varieties of phlox, but do feed on many flowers.

If you're interested in learning more about moths and seeing the huge variety, here is a good website:

http://moths.wordpress.com/2009/03/

The mild winter has resulted in a large number of moths and butterflies in the Midwest this year. I live in central Iowa, and have been amazed by the numbers and varieties. If you need anything else, just let me know by clicking on REPLY. Thank you for your patience.

Anna
Anna
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