I was transfixed, spending at least an hour trying to capture at least one good photograph for my picture files! I stepped right up to the phlox and they continued to methodically feed around the blossoms, totally undaunted by my presence.
Common in North America, the Hummingbird Clearwing (Hemaris thysbe), hovers to feed on nectar at many different flowers, including honeysuckle, beebalm, phlox, lilac and bergamot. Its larvae feed on honeysuckle, buckbrush, wild cherry and plum.
One even came to rest on a Black-eyed Susan,
presenting an opportunity to snap a shot of it's wings.
Have you ever come across a hornworm amongst your tomato plants? Well, guess what!?
When it matures, it becomes a Sphynx Moth - maybe not a Hummingbird Clearwing, but similar, and in my opinion, they are all just as beautiful and engaging to observe. Most species in the group are active at dusk, and feed much like hummingbirds, hovering in front of a flower and sipping nectar through the extended proboscis. Most species pupate in the soil, though some form loose cocoons in the leaf layer.
Here is a quick video! I attempted to capture my own, but to be frank with you, it was easier to find one on YouTube to share! They are busy little fellows and difficult to follow with the camera! I am not well practiced in the art of videoing!