One of the summer activities we most look forward to is National Moth Week. Our First Moth Night was in 2013 and it has since become a tradition. Last year, we collaborated with the rangers at Whiskeytown National Recreation Area allowing us access to the park after hours. Such a delight to have the entire beach all to ourselves!
Several friends joined us – including a small herd of deer who roamed the area nearby for quite some time – and a park ranger and his friend. We hung a sheet between the trees in the forest area adjacent to the picnic tables on the beach and set up a few lanterns. Before night fell, we did a little nature journaling and enjoyed watching the sun set over the lake as we awaited the arrival of the moths.
When it was dark, we began to take note of the insects that slowly arrived. The kids would proudly exclaim, “Here’s another one!” each time a new insect landed on the sheet. While only a few moths came to visit, we did observe many other insects – many of which were beetles.
We did our best to take photographs of each before they flew away – a task that turned out to be a little more difficult than anticipated – and tallied the numbers for each species.
We stayed until the kids began to get a little sleepy. Ranger Bill closed out the evening with a few delightful stories as his friend quietly played her Native American-style flute.
The next National Moth Week will be held July 18-26, 2015 so start planning your events now!
What is Moth Week?
National Moth Week offers everyone, everywhere a unique opportunity to become a Citizen Scientist and contribute scientific data about moths. Through partnerships with Project Noah, Bug Guide, Xerces Society, Lepidoptera Society, and others, National Moth Week participants can help map moth distribution and provide needed information on other life history aspects around the globe.
Mothing can be done anywhere- at parks, nature centers, backyards and even in towns and cities. Events are taking place around the world – join up or host an event of your own. Learn more at National Moth Week.
This year, National Moth Week will spotlight the Sphingidae family of moths found throughout the world commonly called hawk moths, sphinx moths and hornworms.
Join Us For a Memorable Summer Evening
So invite a few friends and contribute to this awesome project by hosting a moth night of your own. What happens at a moth night? Basically, you put up a sheet and a light with a bunch of your friends, and sit around and wait for moths. How simple is that? And it is so much fun!