A surprisingly beautiful moth of impressive size made famous by the movie the Silence of the Lambs, the acherontia was believed to announce death because of the skull shaped image on her thorax. However, this peculiar moth lives off stealing honey from beehives and can softly screech when stressed.
I happened to have a beehive inside my house walls which we voted on (wife and kids) and decided to keep. They bees returned for a few years and these moths begun to visit. Acherontias live like one month and then they die. When I found them outdoors around the house flying recklessly during daytime I would carefully place them in a dark room so they could recover or die in peace. In the night I would open the windows so they could leave. I had like eight visits in a single summer-autumn. Three of them died. This is one of them. I would never hunt or kill such magnificent creature.
One year, the bees didn't return and neither did the acherontias. I had never seen one before the bees came to my house for lodging and I have not seen a single one since. But now I know they are out there. I kind of miss them, though. And the bees too.
There is an unframed version without text and a clear version of this image in my Fauna Gallery.
You can learn more about what drives me in my blog:
May 8th, 2014
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