honeysuckle: the birds and the bees

May 18, 2014

Words and Artwork by katherine sandoz

Under the cloak of night, honeysuckle performs aromatic acrobatics to attract nocturnals.   Moths and bats, not bees, taxi in to pollinate the plant.

Generally, large moths, aka Sphingidae, often confused for hummingbirds by nature watchers, hover over the flower and then place their proboscis into the flute of the honeysuckle blossom. Slightly smaller and more colorful than our feathered friends, the hawk, hummingbird or owlet moth’s tongue-like nectar-collector measures as long or longer than his body! Thrilling naturalists and lepidopterists, the outsize pecker actually rolls out to do its job.

For you sapiosexuals, sphing, indeed!

(“honeysuckle & hawk moth”, 12.25″ x 8.5″, water-based media recycled paper,  2014)

Substrate used to paint this image:  printed paper placemats saved from recent Charleston Southern Coterie Summit luncheon designed and produced by Hester & Cook.


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