In Our Yards: 2 of the 3 Great Silk Moths...
This spring we played host to a big brown pellet. It was 1"x 3" and a friend noticed it on a tree branch in our yard. It was a cocoon!
At the same time our friend Mike Woodruff had a big pellet of his own in his yard in Ann Arbor.
We both wondered what would become of them.
Well, within a few days of each other in early June we had our answers.
Mike's turned into a Cecropia Moth.
And ours turned into a Polyphemus Moth.
We were only missing a Luna Moth and we would've had all 3 of the Giant Silkworm Moths of North America. They're the biggest moths around!
(They aren't good for making silk, however.)
Did you know that they don't eat after they become a flying moth? And that they fly at night and only live for about 5 days. They look for a mate. ...Phermones, baby! Then lay eggs, etc., and that's all she wrote! I guess they then spend the rest of the summer as a caterpillar then winter over in their cocoon before becoming a moth.
Also, ours just bit a little hole in the end of the cocoon then crawled out---very huge. How did it fit thru that hole?
They then inflate their wings to full 5" size by pumping fluid from their abdomen into their wings.
I advise anyone who likes this moth stuff to check out my related (brief) report on the wacky names of moths...