Today marks the last day of National Moth Week. Why study moths? Moths are among the most diverse organisms on Earth – there are somewhere between 150,000 and 500,000 moth species! Moths are ecologically important for many reasons – their hairy bodies are great for pollination, and they are an important food source for many animals (including humans in some parts of the world).
There are so many beautiful caterpillars and moths right in your own backyard – you just might have to venture out at night to see them. Most, though not all, moth species are nocturnal. One fun way to observe and photograph moths is to hang a white sheet outside with a light shining on it. Theories abound as to why moths are attracted to light, but one thing is for certain – if you turn it on, they will come!
Fun Fact: many moths do not eat in their adult form (only as caterpillars); they drink nectar or consume nothing at all. Some moths don’t even have mouthparts! Their entire existence as an adult is spent breeding and laying eggs.
Visit National Moth Week’s website to learn more about these amazing creatures and how you can observe them in the wild.