Monday, March 31, 2014

National Moth Week 2014, July 19-27

National Moth Week 2014, July 19-27,
Invites Citizen Scientists Around the World to Celebrate Moths

The third annual National Moth Week, July 19-27, a global event, will celebrate the beauty, life cycles, and habitats of moths, encouraging “moth-ers” of all ages and abilities to learn about, observe, and document moths in their backyards, parks, and neighborhoods.

National Moth Week (NMW) shines a much-needed spotlight on moths and their ecological importance as well as their incredible biodiversity. This nine-day global event encourages children and adults to become “citizen scientists” and contribute photos and data to online databases. Last year, more than 400 events were held in all 50 states and 41 countries.

Why study moths?
  • Moths are among the most diverse and successful organisms on earth.
  • Scientists estimate there are 150,000 to more than 500,000 moth species. 
  • Their colors and patterns are either dazzling or so cryptic that they define camouflage. Shapes and sizes span the gamut from as small as a pinhead to as large as an adult’s hand. 
  • ost moths are nocturnal, and need to be sought at night to be seen – others fly like butterflies during the day. 
  • Finding moths can be as simple as leaving a porch light on and checking it after dark. Serious moth aficionados use special lights and baits to attract them.
A moth-ing event could involve turning on a porch light at night and watching what happens, or going outside in daylight to find caterpillars and diurnal moths. Participants can use ordinary light bulbs, UV lights, or mercury vapor lights to draw moths, or brush sweet moth bait on tree barks for a bigger response.

Through partnerships with major online biological data depositories such as BAMONA, Project Noah, Encyclopedia of Life, Discover Life, and iNaturalist, National Moth Week encourages participants to record moth distribution and to provide information on other aspects of their life cycles and habitats.

Last year, moth-watching and educational events were held throughout Europe, Asia, Africa, South, Central, and North America. Events included “moth nights,” museum exhibitions, a “moth ball,” educational programs at parks and camps, urban mothing parties, and tours of the insect collection at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History.

IndianMoths is partnering this year too in this international citizen science initiative. To participate in the event visit Locations page to go to event locations in India. Find a public event near you or volunteer to organize a public or private event.

Please post your records on India Biodiversity Portal or iNaturalist project to get identification help from members.

If you have any questions about the event feel free to contact me at vijay at

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