Admittedly, this photo isn’t from any time recently. I took this during the summer of 2014 at Springbrook Nature Center in Fridley, MN. It was while I was working for a nonprofit organization called Tree Trust building a 180-foot swamp foot boardwalk with local high school students. It was also my first time seeing one of these moths. I was mesmerized and so were the kids. It’s the polyphemus moth, Antheraea polyphemus, and one of our largest silk moths. If you’re a Greek mythology buff you may recognize the name. Polyphemus was a giant cyclops and inspired the name because of the large eyespots in the middle of the hind wings.
Not in Minnesota? No problem! These moths are found everywhere between Canada and Mexico with the exception of Arizona and Nevada.