Monday, June 30, 2008

Three new moths

I continue to take many images of moths at my porch light and elsewhere. They're piling up, and it will take a good while to id them all. Here three geometrids from earlier this spring:
7213 Small Phoenix
7329 Variable Carpet
6321 Black-banded Orange
The latter moth (#6321) is a small day-flying moth that looks rather like a tiny butterfly.
(The numbers are called Hodges numbers, and are used to identify every moth in North America.)

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

My First Luna Moth

I walked out my front door Saturday morning, and took pictures of two moths on the wall. I turned back to see what else was there, and nearly jumped out of my skin. There was a large Luna Moth (Actias luna, Family Saturniidae), beside the front door! It was so low down that its tail was curved out along the concrete. I left it there all day, but on Sunday I transferred it to a hanging planter that I had just purchased. On Monday it had moved to the opposite side of the planter, but on Tuesday it had disappeared.

Saturniid adults exist only to mate. They do all their eating as larvae, and come out of the pupa without mouthparts. After mating, they just wait around to die, their purpose completed. Perhaps this one has found another safe place to rest for awhile.