(Rogers, Ohio, USA) My grandaughter noticed this amazing looking butterfly hanging off our front porch. We live in a rural country area and I have never ever seen anything like it so I would appreciate it if you could let us know what we were looking at. Thanks so much for your time. She’ll be thrilled to know what it is as will I. Thanks again.
You and your granddaughter are very fortunate to have seen one of these gorgeous moths! From your photo it looks like it may have just emerged from its pupal cocoon. Also, I am not positive due to the angle but it looks like it is a male because of the very feathery antenna. These are beautiful moths! One of the largest in the US. You have found a Cecropia moth…one of the large silk moths, family Saturniidae.
Living in a rural area you have a better chance of see one that in a big city, however, the adults are known to come to lights at night especially the large shopping centers or gas station lights. The adults are out now looking for the right tree to lay eggs.
Larvae feed on leaves of various trees and shrubs including alder, apple, ash, beech, birch, box-elder, cherry, dogwood, elm, gooseberry, maple, plum, poplar, white oak, willow.
Adults do not feed.
These are found east of the Rocky Mountains, from Nova Scotia south to Florida.
What a great find!