Elephant hawk caterpillars (Deilephila elpenor) are the larvae of the elephant hawk moth, which is a species of hawk moth. Elephant hawk caterpillars are known for their distinctive appearance, which includes a bright green body, a small red head, and large pink or red eye spots.

There are many different kinds of caterpillars, and it can be difficult to determine which ones are best for your home garden. Fortunately, the caterpillars of the elephant hawk moth are harmless, and don’t sting, like some other species of moth caterpillars. And even though they can poison birds and pets, they won’t do any harm to your plants and animals. The majority of the food that these insects eat is plants, and they love to eat fuchsias, kale, lettuce, and many other plants.

The elephant hawk moth is an attractive, medium-sized hawk-moth. They are most common in woodland edges, parks, rough grassland and sand dunes. They are harmless to both humans and pets, and they will only damage the plant if they feed on it too much. The caterpillars are 8cm long and resemble a small elephant, complete with a horn on the rear end.

What Elephant Hawk Caterpillars Eat

Elephant hawk caterpillars feed on various plant species, including cherry trees, willow trees, and field bindweed. These plants all contain chemicals that are poisonous to most animals but not to the elephant hawk caterpillar. The caterpillar is able to absorb these chemicals while feeding and use them as defense against predators. They are nocturnal and only fly for one season a year. And unlike most moths, they can feed on fruits. During the day, they may feed on fruit. During the summer, they may feed on corn cobs, lettuce, and cabbage.

What Do Elephant Hawk Caterpillars Eat

This article will cover the food habits of elephant hawk moths, their life cycle, and what they eat. If you’ve ever wondered how they survive, read on! These caterpillars grow to about 85mm long. While the most common color is brown, they can also be green or black. Elephant hawk moth caterpillars feed on willowherb and rest for the day. After completing the life cycle, adults lay eggs and pupate for about a month.

fuchsia leaves

While fuchsia bushes are an important food source, the caterpillars will also eat rosebay willowherb. Fuchsia leaves are highly nutritious to the caterpillars, and they can be found on fuchsia leaves in the southern summer. While the caterpillars are difficult to see, you may still spot them munching through the foliage at night.

The caterpillars of the elephant hawk moth feed on fuchsia leaves and other fuchsia plants. They overwinter as chrysalides and feed on various types of soft-bodied plants. Their larvae are more colorful than the adult moths and lay eggs on the brightest leaves of plants. They feed primarily on fuchsia leaves.

Once the caterpillars have emerged from their cocoon, they will need to pupate. In order to pupate, they will need a protected place to pupate. Gardeners will encounter these insects in late summer or early fall. You will notice the fuchsia leaves on lawns, paths and even bare ground. They will bury themselves under leaves or other debris to pupate. The transformation takes a few months and will leave you with a beautiful moth to enjoy.


The caterpillars of the Elephant Hawk Moth feed on a wide variety of plants. Their larvae eat nectar from flowering plants and nectar gathered from flowering plants. The caterpillars feed on plant matter and are active from early June to late September. They prefer willowherb, bedstraw, and rosebay willowherb. While feeding, the caterpillars hover over the flower and suck on the nectar. These moths can reach 11 mph and are active from dusk until dawn, resting at their final food source during the day.


It may sound weird, but elephant hawk caterpillars aren’t harmful to your garden plants or pets. They are black and yellow in color, and their bodies resemble a small elephant. Their eyespots are a warning sign to predators, and they can be found in grassy habitats. While you should not feed them to your pets, they do not harm your plants.

Adult elephant hawk moths lay eggs on willowherbs. They feed on the nectar from certain flowers. The caterpillars themselves aren’t picky eaters, and the adult moth will eat willowherb and other plants. The caterpillars lay their eggs in the willowherb after the moths pupate. In fact, the caterpillars eat these plants in large quantities.

The elephant hawk moth is a pest, but the caterpillars it produces are harmless to humans. They don’t sting, so you can safely handle them yourself. Although the caterpillars can harm birds and plants, they will not harm humans. The caterpillars will feed on fuchsia, kale, and lettuce. They also lay eggs in other plants.

Adult elephant hawk moths lay their eggs in the late summer and early autumn. During this time, they feed on various flowering plants and fruits. They often fly from flower to flower in search of pollen and nectar. They also mate in late summer, between early August and early October, when the vegetation is scarce. Caterpillars become larger at night and stay low near the base of plants.

Life cycle of Elephant Hawk Caterpillar

The life cycle of an Elephant Hawk caterpillar begins when it is a small caterpillar, but the transformation is not complete. The caterpillar eventually develops into a moth or butterfly and has two, three, or five pairs of functional legs. It feeds on grasses at night. A close look at the caterpillar can reveal how it changes from a caterpillar to a flying insect. While it might not look like much, it actually has five pairs of legs.

Adults of the Elephant Hawk moths have a lifespan of five weeks and are solitary. Adults flutter about at dusk and rest by sunrise. The moths feed on rosebay willowherb during the summer. Elephant hawk moths and their caterpillars also feed on other flowers. These species of moths can feed on various types of nectar.

The life cycle of an Elephant Hawk caterpillar begins with egg formation. The caterpillar eats plant matter, as well as nectar, which is harvested at night. Male and female Elephant Hawk caterpillars are a distinct difference, with the male being brighter and more colorful. Females lay eggs atop leaves, and the eggs have a glossy surface. The caterpillar then develops into an adult moth.

The caterpillar will continue to eat and molt until it reaches the final instar, or pupation. As it grows, its number of visible prolegs increases until it becomes too big to fit into its shell. Once it has fully transformed into a moth, it will wander away from its host plant and pupate elsewhere. A larval Elephant Hawk caterpillar is about three inches long. It may weigh up to 20 grams.

Physical Characteristics of Elephant Hawk Caterpillar

This hawk-moth’s population is abundant, but its conservation status is Not Evaluated due to the use of pesticides by humans. The caterpillar is distinctive for its colors. Its forewings are olive-green, and its wings are marked with pink. The back of the caterpillar’s head has huge eyespots that help it look bigger. The adult moths eat communication-related plants such as willowherbs, but the caterpillar’s eyespots are a defence mechanism that makes it look bigger and more striking.

Elephant Hawkmoths, also referred to as Elephant Hawk Caterpillars, are a species of moth known for their long, trunk-like mouthparts. Native to Europe and Asia, these caterpillars are considered to be beneficial due to the fact that they eat weeds and pest plants.

Once the caterpillar has fully developed into its adult moth form, it can grow up to 4 inches in length. The Elephant Hawkmoth is the largest moth found in Britain, and it has a wingspan of 4 inches as well.

The caterpillar’s most distinguishing feature is its trunk-like appearance, which is caused by the way that it feeds on flowers such as honeysuckle and garden balsam. This gives the Elepant Hawkmoth a very distinctive appearance that can almost resemble an elephant.

The caterpillars of the elephant hawk moth moths are herbivorous. They feed on soft-bodied plants, such as rosebay willowherb, alfalfa, and clover. They also eat grass seeds. The adult hawk moth is a large, beautiful, and colorful butterfly, with a wing span of 62-72mm. The adults of the hawk moth are night-flying, and may be found on lawns, garden paths, and gardens.

The larva of the Elephant Hawk moth has four eye spots, similar to snake eyes, and retracts its body toward its head when threatened. The Elephant Hawk moth’s communication system is an excellent example of how some animals survive. Its communication strategy is the use of vocalization. It has been found that elephant hawk caterpillars make a sound that sounds like “sssss-kih-kih-kih” or “ss-kih-kih-koh-kih-kih-kih-ki-kih” (two seconds long).


The Elephant Hawk Moth caterpillar changes colour several times before it reaches full maturity. The caterpillar is most often brown but it can also be green or black. . Their long horns over their head resemble a helmet. Their colouring is similar to that of an elephant, and they have orange and black spots on their bodies.

At first, it is a pink-olive-green moth, and the thorax is slender in comparison to the rest of its body. During this time, it feeds on plants with nectar. When it becomes a fully-grown caterpillar, the moth has five distinct colours. The caterpillars are brightly coloured, but females are less attractive than males. After mating, the females lay eggs on leaves. The eggs have a glossy surface and are eaten by the adult moths within ten days.

The colors of Elephant Hawk Caterpillars may be intimidating at first glance, but a closer look reveals a very fascinating creature. These holometabolous creatures change from a caterpillar to a moth inside of a cocoon. Interestingly, elephant hawk caterpillars are quite strong fliers. They can hover into position while feeding. Once they are completely grown, these caterpillars turn into a gorgeously colored butterfly or moth.

Elephant Hawk Moth Caterpillar Size

The Elephant Hawk-moth caterpillar (Deilephila elpenor) matures to about 85mm in length and is one of the largest and most distinctive caterpillars to be found in the British Isles. It is also the most frequently seen hawk-moth caterpillar, often found feeding and wandering in search of somewhere to pupate.

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