nichepoetryandprose

poetry and prose about place

in the shelter of the covered bridge – hummingbird hawkmoths

with 6 comments


At one end of the Benton Covered Bridge (Eel River #3) is a large Lilac bush.

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TRIP TO BENTON 2015 078_crop

Lilac by the Benton Bridge

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Since I was looking for wild life in the vicinity of the bridge, I was delighted to see what appeared to be bumblebees or hummingbirds busy gathering nectar from the Lilac blossoms.

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TRIP TO BENTON 2015 075_crop

moth getting nectar from the flowers – you can see his orangy body and dark antennae

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As we approached, we realised these were not bumblebees or hummingbirds, but a type of ‘hummingbird hawkmoth’.  They behaved like hummingbirds, darting among the flowers, backing up and slipping sideways.  Their transparent wings were a blur, they moved so fast.  Their bodies were striped in gold and black and their bodies were very hairy.

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TRIP TO BENTON 2015 076_crop

hummingbird hawkmoth, his wings a blur, gathering nectar

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Although my photographs are not very clear, with help from the New Brunswick Museum staff, I now know these are Hummingbird Clearwing moths (Hemaris thysbe).  Although I listened carefully, I could not hear the sound their wings made, since the rippling of the water in the river was so loud!

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There were hundreds of moths in the Lilac bush.  The hummingbird hawkmoths shared their feast with a group of very nervous Canadian Tiger Swallowtail butterflies (Papilio canadensis).

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The Lilac scent was overwhelming, thick and sweet.  If that scent was a room, it would be a Victorian parlour.  If it was a textile it would be deep-purple satin.  If it was weather, it would be a sultry August evening.  If it was a light, it would be a Moroccan lantern … and so on.

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TRIP TO BENTON 2015 088_crop

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Copyright 2015 Jane Tims

 

6 Responses

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  1. The photos plus the write ups are the equivalent of photo poems. This is a poem in itself:

    “The Lilac scent was overwhelming,
    thick and sweet.

    If that scent was a room,
    it would be a Victorian parlour.

    If it was a textile
    it would be deep-purple satin.

    If it was weather,
    it would be a sultry August evening.

    If it was a light,
    it would be a Moroccan lantern.”

    There is beauty everywhere when you put pen to paper.

    Liked by 1 person

    rogermoorepoet

    April 27, 2016 at 9:38 am

    • Thank you Roger! Shows how close together prose and poetry can be. There is such beauty in words.

      Like

      jane tims

      April 27, 2016 at 10:19 am

  2. Lilacs are, by far, my favourite flower. With your lovely pictures, I could practically smell them from here!

    Liked by 1 person

    Christine Penhale

    June 20, 2015 at 1:54 pm

  3. I never knew what these were. I’ve seen them before around here. I like the “if they were…they would be…” images. A great way to add imagery to writing.

    Liked by 1 person

    Carol Steel

    June 10, 2015 at 8:20 am

    • Museum staff helped me with identification. I also knew about them but never tried identification before! Jane

      Like

      jane tims

      June 10, 2015 at 9:12 am


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