The caterpillar of this species is amazing, being bright green, striped with
white, and having a spiky tail that grows to about 1 cm long. The caterpillar
itself can grow up to 10 cm long and around 1.5 cm in diameter.
Being a hawk
moth, the caterpillar rears up in a sphinx-like pose when it is disturbed.
Also, it eats practically anything. The one in the photos is eating ornamental
olive, but they also eat snapdragon, foxglove, privet, and jasmine, among
The pupa is formed in autumn, as the caterpillar pupates over winter.
It is about 4-5 cm long, and has a kind of hook at the head, which is where
the moths tongue, or haustella, is formed. The moth itself is rather large,
having a wingspan of over 10 cm. It is brown and grey striped on the tops of its
wings, and dull brown underneath.