Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Tetrio sphinx
Pseudosphinx tetrio (Linnaeus, 1771)

Family: Sphingidae
Subfamily: Macroglossinae
Identification: Forewing upperside is dark brown with a dark spot at the base of the costa and blurry gray and white markings. Hindwing upperside is dark brown with white along the inner margin and the lower half of the outer margin.
Wing Span: 5 - 5 1/2 inches (12.7 - 14 cm).
Life History: Females lay eggs in clusters on leaves of the host tree.
Flight: . Several flights from March-September in Florida.
Caterpillar Hosts: Frangipani (Plumeria rubra) and other Plumeria species, and Allamanda species; all in the dogbane family (Apocynaceae).
Adult Food: Nectar from flowers including rosy periwinkle (Vinca rosea).
Habitat: Tropical and subtropical lowlands.
Range: Southern Brazil north through Central America, Mexico, and the West Indies to south Florida, southern Mississippi, Texas, and southern Arizona. Has strayed to Nebraska and Pennsylvania.
Conservation: Not usually required.
NCGR: G5 - Demonstrably secure globally, though it may be quite rare in parts of its range, especially at the periphery.
Management Needs: Tetrio sphinx caterpillars can defoliate a frangipani tree in a few days.
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