Calling All Moth Enthusiasts

National Moth Week is July 17-25

Hebrew Character Moth

Hey there, any moth lovers among you? I have to say, the only thing I ever thought about moths before I came to Pembrokeshire was that they snacked on your clothes. It was only after Glenn Ibbitson, very much admired local artist, started posting images on Facebook of the moths he was finding that I realised how diverse these little beasties are. All the images we have here are with his very kind permission.

Black Arches Moth

Moth enthusiasts reckon that there are between 150,000 to 500,000 species and they can be all sizes from minuscule to massive… massive being as large as a human hand. You wouldn’t want too many of those in your wardrobe.

Underside of the August Thorn Moth

The patterns  are incredible, all shades and shapes, and some moths are most definitely nocturnal while others can be seen during the day. 

December Moth

Uncertain how to tell the difference between a moth and a butterfly, I did a bit of research. Apparently a butterfly’s antennae are club-shaped with a long shaft and a bulb at the end. A moth’s antennae are feathery or saw-edged.

Eyed Hawkmoth

Butterflies also tend to fold their wings vertically up over their backs – moths in a tent-like fashion that covers the body.

Mint Moth

So now we  know.

Ruby Tiger Moth

A lightbox is a good way to attract them if you want to observe them further but please set them free safely to go about their moth business when you have had a look.

Just leaving a light on in a porch after dark is bait enough for casual observation but if you want to go further you can use black lights and mercury vapour lights which emit a kind of light that moths are particularly partial to.

Hanging something like a white sheet between trees or on a washing line is good to shine the light on. Moths can then rest on that surface where they can be observed or photographed.

Detail of Merveille de Jour Moth

Going a step further, you can make or buy a box or moth trap. Have a look online for instructions and manufacturers.

Pine Beauty Moth

If that piques your enthusiasm you might be interested to know that National Moth Week, which celebrates the beauty, life cycles, and habitats of moths will be happening worldwide very soon.

Streamer Moth

It’s a chance to join with other enthusiasts to learn and share your experiences of these amazing creatures. It is also an opportunity to become a Citizen Scientist and contribute scientific data about moths. Through partnerships with major online biological data depositories, NMW participants can help map moth distribution and provide needed information on other life history aspects around the globe.

To find out more about moths and Moth Week, go to https://nationalmothweek.org/

Red Green Carpet Moth

Many thanks to Glenn Ibbitson for allowing us to use some of his images of moths. He has used these images in his art and they are definitely worth seeing on his website, along with other examples of his work. Please note that all of the images here are Glenn’s property and should not be reproduced without his permission.

Glenns website: https://www.glennibbitsonart.com

Kitty Parsons

Kitty knows that she will always be an incomer, but this is to be her sixth summers. The wet and grey days of winters have not diminished her love of Pembrokeshire, but she is always grateful for the golden light of spring and summer. Her love of the sea sustains her even through the darkest of days and she can often be found at high tide bobbing about in Fishguard harbour at high tide, often with seals in attendance. When not freezing in water she is usually at her computer. She says" Pembrokeshire.online has been an opportunity to celebrate this beautiful county and its people. Keep the stories coming. We love to hear from you."

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