Light from Darkness: Lessons from National Moth Week

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August 2, 2021 by VAL

By Bryan Pfeiffer

By the thousands they flew into our lives. Moths small as rice. Moths wide as your palm. Moths in mundane browns and grays. Moths sporting zigzags and polka dots. And moths adorned in carmine, azure and gold.

Their common names alone bear witness to their diversity: Ruby Tiger Moth and Rosy Maple Moth. Charming Underwing and Ugly Nest Caterpillar Moth. Small Bird-dropping Moth and Viper’s Bugloss Moth.

Orange-headed Epicallima Moth (Epicallima argenticinctella) / 22 July 2021 / Montpelier, Vermont.

By the time National Moth Week ended at midnight Sunday, we Vermonters had photographed more than 3,800 moths representing nearly 603 species. And for many of the 261 “moth-ers” contributing to the project in our brave little state, the moths put on a show in our own backyards. If for some reason you happened to miss out on National Moth Week, and the concurrent 2021 Vermont Moth Blitz sponsored by the Vermont Center for Ecostudies, our results, in all their resplendence, are on display at (By the way, those 3,800 moths were but a mere fraction of the tens of thousands that actually appeared for us.)

So why should you care about the moths we discovered? Read more and find out on Bryan’s Blog.