Acherontia styx




from the Arabian Peninsula (Oman, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran and migrating northwards to Israel, Syria and Turkey) east via Afghanistan, Pakistan and India to China and Vietnam and south via Thailand throughout the Malay Archipelago. 


In between 9 and 12 centimeter


In the wild at least 4 flights annually. In captivity continuously.

Food plants:

Oleaceae (Ligustrum, Fraxinus, Jasminum, ...), Solanaceae (Lycium, Solanum, Datura, Nicotiana, ...), Bignoniaceae (Tecoma, Spathodea, ...), Verbenaceae (Lantana, Duranta, Vitex, ...), also Clerodendrum


Can be somewhat challenging. Keep very warm and dry. Clean daily. Place the cage in a bright spot (but not in full sun).  The caterpillars are full grown in less then 4 weeks. Keep the first 3 instars in well ventilated plastic containers, but move to a netted cage when large enough. Ready to pupate caterpillars should be placed individually in a small plastic containers lined with kitchen towels and placed dark. Open daily and replace moist and dirty paper. Continue until they have pupated. The pupal stage is short (only 2 to 3 weeks). Do not try to diapause.


warm and dry conditions are necessary