Hummingbird Hawkmoth failed to survive eclosion

on 9th June 2016


After my failure to video the eclosion of the Hummingbird Hawkmoth (Macroglossum sitiene) but success in documenting the adult moth probing for nectar from flowers of Wild Water Plum (Wrightia religiosa), see LINK, I managed to obtain another pupa from Foo Jit Leang (above).

Unfortunately I again failed to video the crucial moment the moth emerged from the pupa. This was despite my leaving the video on for nearly two days and one night in front of the pupa.

By then the pupa was black and I had given up hope, assuming that it was dead. But it was not dead. On the morning of the third day it eclosed – undocumented.

HummingbirdHawkmoth-dry wings

I picked it up and placed it on a short branch to allow it to dry its wings (above). After a few hours of moving various parts, it eventually fell from its perch, vigorously fluttering its wings (below).


Apparently it wings were damaged and it was not able to fly. Sadly it died soon after. No idea why.

YC Wee
10th April 2016

If you like this post please tap on the Like button at the left bottom of page. Any views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the authors/contributors, and are not endorsed by the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum (LKCNHM, NUS) or its affiliated institutions. Readers are encouraged to use their discretion before making any decisions or judgements based on the information presented.

YC Wee

Dr Wee played a significant role as a green advocate in Singapore through his extensive involvement in various organizations and committees: as Secretary and Chairman for the Malayan Nature Society (Singapore Branch), and with the Nature Society (Singapore) as founding President (1978-1995). He has also served in the Nature Reserve Board (1987-1989), Nature Reserves Committee (1990-1996), National Council on the Environment/Singapore Environment Council (1992-1996), Work-Group on Nature Conservation (1992) and Inter-Varsity Council on the Environment (1995-1997). He is Patron of the Singapore Gardening Society and was appointed Honorary Museum Associate of the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum (LKCNHM) in 2012. In 2005, Dr Wee started the Bird Ecology Study Group. With more than 6,000 entries, the website has become a valuable resource consulted by students, birdwatchers and researchers locally and internationally. The views and opinions expressed in this article are his own, and do not represent those of LKCNHM, the National University of Singapore or its affiliated institutions.

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