I had earlier posted on a Kamakura hummingbird sighting. However, alert blog reader Barbara notified me that hummingbirds occur naturally only in North and South America.
A few minutes on Google led to the inexorable conclusion that the "hummingbird" was no hummingbird! It was a "hummingbird hawkmoth." From the Japan Times:
Adults hover over flowers to feed on the nectar, sucking it out with a proboscis (tongue) up to 30 mm long. The moth has to remain a constant distance from the flower in order to take up nectar, so it has very finely tuned reactions and highly controlled flight ability. If there is a gust of wind, the moth instantly and precisely follows the movement of the flower head.
But you know, it's cool. I see hummingbirds every day here, have to chase them away practically.
But I've only seen one Hummingbird Hawkmoth. (Blog post originally published 2008.)
Photo: Hummingbird Hawkmoth—Kamakura, 2008