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There is a moth on the door.

At first we thought it was a bird, which may tell you something. It is bright, lemony yellow, and has a wingspan wider than my hand is long. Its body is unbelievably huge, thicker around than James's thumb, and at least two inches long (I held a ruler up the glass.) The feathery antennae are large and visible and it has large mesh eyes and frantically groping yellow squidgy bits.

It is fearfully enormous, larger than some of the little birds around here. I can't imagine a bat trying to eat it--even the big brown bats aren't very much larger than this is. It'd be like me trying to tackle a live goat with my teeth.

I am both fascinated and thoroughly grossed out.

Update: And thanks to level_head, we have an ID! It's an Imperial Moth! Woo! Go Imperial Moth!

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I am both fascinated and thoroughly grossed out.

This may not quite be the story of your life, but it strikes me as a major thematic element. ;)

That is pretty fucking awesome.

Photo! Photo!

Assuming you have good zoom, so you don't get too close to the squidgy bits. ;)

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It sounds like a luna moth to me, too... Those are gorgeous! I remember a loooong time ago mom found one on the back porch and I held it for a short while before letting it go. It kinda felt magical for a little five year old. ;)

oh com'on -- picture?

Sorry to post this here, but...

Does it look like that? :F

Intriguing, but no. This is a bright lemony yellow, and the more conventional moth shape.

Your friend webgodd_s sent me over here to ID your moth for you, but looks like I am too late to be of any use. Here's a few photos of a male imperial moth I caught a couple weeks ago, though:

imperial moth

do the hokey pokey

and you turn your moth around

That's what its all about.

*grin* But still, I appreciate the thought! And he's a nifty looking moth--I think mine must've been a female, it seemed a little bigger (although without knowing exactly how large your hands are, it's hard to say!)

And that icon...phew.

If you can remember if yours was rounder bodied (the females are round because they are storing eggs), if it had thin antennae compared to the male one in the photo (males have wider antennae to locate the pheromones of the females with), or if it had less brown on its wings (the females are more yellow), then you had a female. I know it is kind of hard to tell when you aren't looking at one anymore, though.

Here's a (dead) female that I was given a few years ago. She had already laid eggs and was dying when I got her:

female imperial moth

female imperial moth from behind

Note that at the time of the photo she does not have the same body size, considering she has dried out since then. She would have been wider.

Thanks for the help! : )

It sounds a bit like some sort of hawk/sphynx moth from that, but I couldn't be sure as to species or anything. I've love to see pictures, though.

A couple of candidates occurred to me:

The Laurel Sphinx

The Io Moth"

And in general, to find it yourself:
Moths of North Carolina

===|==============/ Level Head

Aha! The eyespots match, and the timing--it's an Imperial Moth. Thank you for that link!

It'd be like me trying to tackle a live goat with my teeth.

It'd work with sharp enough teeth :-D

That image couldn't possibly have had anything to do with Chu, could it?

No, but that does apply!

Except that for Chu it would be really easy, and for Ursula it wouldn't be.

Er, aside... what is your user icon, Sarah? It's almost identical to a mysterious stuffed toy I have, and I never knew what it was from.

It's Troy the Angry Monkey with Wings, holding a banana. And completely from imagination.

Almost identical to a stuffed toy, you say? That's kinda weird.

The icon's a character that you made up, you mean? Freaky.

Now that I've gotten the toy out from the box- it has the same body shape and coloration as the icon, even of the wings, same hairless paws and face. The wings aren't so much like a Wuzzle's wings in shape, though, and the tail is hairless, and the eyes are smaller. And it's not screaming. I remembered it as looking more similar, but it's still a closer match than I've seen so far.

Here I was hoping I'd finally found someone who could tell me what the thing is.

It doesn't have an informative tag on it anywhere. It doesn't look handmade, and the type of stuffing isn't what carnival prizes are like. At first I thought it was from some short-lived cartoon, but it doesn't look like it's based on a cartoon- it's more like someone was trying to make a realistic monkey with rat's tail and butterfly's wings. Very weird.

I could take a photo of it.

I guess it's just one of those things, but...

...how can anyone be grossed out by a moth? They're soft and fuzzy, don't sting or bite, have the proper number of eyes and don't smell, make noise or have ghastly (if beneficial) reproductive habits like some wasps do.

It's like they're hummingbirds with six legs.

Hm. A series of Audubon-style illos of hummingbirds with moth colorations? "And this is what bioengineering tycoon H. C. Bunner spent his remaining years and fortune on after the DNA-com crash of '25..."

--An old blue Scot called Dill...

Re: I guess it's just one of those things, but...

It's the boneless wavy squidgy bits. It just doesn't move right for my brain.

Re: I guess it's just one of those things, but...

It's an Insect. It has an exoskeleton, therefore it's entirely boneless. If you read the description that levelhead gave you, they seem to be unable to even eat. Most moths have a "sillystraw" like feeding tube, and that's not that frightening, is it?


Re: I guess it's just one of those things, but...

Dude, you're trying to apply logic to a hindbrain function, here. I have no fear that the moth is gonna eat me, but my brain nevertheless throws up roadblocks screaming "ICKY!" I can't help it.

I have no fear of snakes or rats, mind you, so I suppose I had to be squeamish about SOMETHING.

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Re: I guess it's just one of those things, but...

Drums: Bum ba-ba-ba bum bom, bum ba-ba-ba bum bom/ (repeat)
Horns come in: Ta ta ta pa-pa ta pa-pa ta! Bwa bwa ta pa-pa ta, pa-pa ta!
Enter strings: Dee fa dee fiddle-da dee fwee dee, fiddle-de-dee fwee fwee, fiddly-dee diddly-dee!

Sorry, I can't help but hear the full orchestral version in my mind when someone starts humming that tune.

It's the boneless wavy squidgy bits. It just doesn't move right for my brain.

See, now you've just described a ferret...


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