Updated as per http://biological-diversity.info/sphingidae.htm (Belize), November 2007
Updated as per Fauna Entomologica De Nicarauga, November 2007
Updated as per The Known Sphingidae of Costa Rica, November 2007

Manduca muscosa
(Rothschild and Jordan, 1903) Protoparce
Muscosa Sphinx

Manduca muscosa, Jalisco, Mexico, July 2003, courtesy of Jean Haxaire copyright.

This site has been created by Bill Oehlke at oehlkew@islandtelecom.com
Comments, suggestions and/or additional information are welcomed by Bill.


Family: Sphingidae, Latreille, 1802
Subfamily: Sphinginae, Latreille, [1802]
Tribe: Sphingini, Latreille, 1802
Genus: Manduca Hubner, 1807 ...........
Species: muscosa Rothschild & Jordan, 1903


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The Muscosa Sphinx, Manduca muscosa (Wing span: 4 - 5 inches (100 - 126 mm)), flies in
Mexico (specimen type locality) and
Belize: Cayo;
Guatemala: Izabal (JM);
Nicaragua: Mayasa, Granada, probably Rivas;
Costa Rica: Guanacaste, Alajuela, Puntarenas;
north through Mexico to southern and western Arizona in tropical and subtropical lowlands and premontane forests and oak woodland.

The upperside of the moth is soft greenish gray; the forewing has a small green to white cell spot, and the hindwing has black bands and a black patch at the base.

Manduca muscosa male courtesy of Dan Janzen.


In southern Arizona there is one flight from mid-July to early August. In Costa Rica moths are taken from May through November.


Pupae probably wiggle to surface from subterranean chambers just prior to eclosion.


Females call in the males with a pheromone released from a gland at the tip of the abdomen. Adults likely nectar from deep-throated flowers.

Manduca muscosa female courtesy of Dan Janzen.


Larvae have striping even in the first instar. Growth is very rapid.

Second instar larvae are well camouflaged on undersides of foliage, usually resting on mid vein.

Images courtesy of Dan Janzen.

Larvae feed on Verbesina gigantea, Lasianthaea fruticosa, Eupatorium albicaule, Viguiera dentata and Eupatorium albicaule of the Asteraceae family, Lantana camara of the Verbenaceae family, and probably on plants from the families Solanaceae, and Bignoniaceae.

Helianthus annuus and Jacaranda caroba have also been reported as larval hosts.

Photo courtesy of Bruce Walsh, Arizona.

Photo courtesy of Dan Janzen, Costa Rica.

Larvae excavate subterranean chambers and pupate on their backs.

The pupa is brown, not black, and it is thinner than is the pupa of Manduca dilucida, Manduca florestan, Manduca lanuginosa.

Larvae are subject to parasitization by Drino rhoeoof the Tachinidae family.

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