To me, this looks like a cross between a butterfly, a bee, and a hummingbird. It has a proboscis that curls up like a butterfly’s (not shown in the pictures). I think it has 6 legs, but only 2 look articulated like a bee’s. And, it hovers like a hummingbird, never coming to rest. The bug is about 2″ long. First time I’ve seen anything like it. I have not seen one this summer, just last summer.
I live in Ann Arbor, MI. This was taken in August of 2009. The plant is a butterfly bush.
Sure would love your help in ID’ing this.
Snowberry Clearwing moth
They typically have all black legs where yours look like the front legs are white (hummingbird clearwing has all white legs…the markings do not fit that moth otherwise) – my guess is the lighting affected the color.
This moth and its relatives are in the sphinx moth family with the common name of hummingbird moths, which fly during the daytime and at dusk hovering like hummingbirds.
The snowberry clearwing moth feeds on nectar of many flowers as you saw. The caterpillar of this moth feeds on snowberry, honeysuckle, dogbane, and bush honeysuckle plants.
They are found thru out North America.
Neat to see and hard to get a clear photo as they fly so fast!