How long do moths live? This question resembles the famous one about lengths of string. Most evidence suggests, however, that the adult insect counts its span in weeks, if not days. A moth is fragile and highly desirable to predators such as bats and birds. There are exceptions, however, and this benevolent-looking giant is one of them. It has something of an elephant about it, and something of a Hercules transporter plane. I was startled to find it in the trap: it's one of our local Poplar Hawk moths which must have hatched in June or even May. I hope that its return visit to the lamp did not endanger it. I hid it as carefully and inconspicuously as I could and left it to doze on.
When I Googled the question which starts this post, I found this entertaining comment on a Yahoo Q&A. Not everyone likes moths, it has to be said... The questioner called Trixydaf in Australia had asked about lifespans. A helpful reader filled her in and added advice against keeping moths as pets. Here is her reply:
i deffinatly dont want to keep it as a pet but there are so many around sydney at the moment and i am hoping they will all die soon. thanks