Yellow-legged Clearwing Synanthedon vespiformis
Some moths don't look like moths or butterflies at all. The clearwings are good examples of that. They imitate wasps and other dangerous insects. If you want to fool other animals into believing that you are dangerous, your wings shouldn't resemble those of moths of course. So their wings are not covered by scales as in most moths, making the look like anything but the moths they are. Look at the long tongue for instance. It can be rolled up: the instrument is typical for butterflies and moths and not for wasps! This immitation of wasps does the trick in day time only of course. All clearwings therefore fly with daylight. Clearwings are rather small, fast flying moths that are overlooked by most people. The Yellow-legged Clearwing regularly visits our garden. It is not a very common species. In Britain it can be found in the South only. Rare in Northern Europe and not very common in Central Europe. The larvae of the Yellow-legged Clearwing live under the bark of oak and occasionally other trees for two years. Can also be found in tree stumps. The wingspan is about 22 mm. Males have a black tail, in females the tail is yellow. Scientifically also referred to as Aegeria vespiformis.