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Latest Lepidoptera Stories

Monarch Population Declining In Mexican Forests
2013-08-26 05:14:06

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports - Your Universe Online Experts are concerned that monarch butterflies, famous for their nearly 3,000 mile migration to Mexico and coastal California during the late summer/early fall months, could be drastically decreasing in numbers. According to James A. Foley of Nature World News, conservation groups are reporting that the number of monarch butterflies in the Mexican forests where they hibernate over the winter were at their lowest point in two...

The Whys And Hows Of Standardized Methods For The GMO Monitoring Of Butterflies And Moths
2013-08-09 11:25:22

Pensoft Publishers Butterflies and moths were the first biological indicators considered for the purpose of GMO monitoring within the VDI guidelines series. The European community stipulates a monitoring plan in order to trace and identify any harmful effects on human health or the environment of GMO after they have been placed on the market. Butterflies and moths are widely accepted as relevant protection goals and have often been suggested and applied as suitable indicators for the...

Monarch Butterfly Migration Tracked
2013-08-07 13:18:09

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Monarch butterflies are known for their annual migration that spans several generations and can extend from Canada to Mexico. Tracking these majestic butterflies across thousands of miles and several generations has proven difficult for lepidopterologists, but new research published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B has done just that and revealed new details about the majestic insect's life cycle in the process. Before the...

Butterfly Wings Serve As Inspiration For Materials That Could Change Color By Design
2013-07-18 05:55:35

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Butterflies have beautiful wings full of colorful patterns that do remarkable things with light. A new study from a Hong Kong Baptist University team of physicists has uncovered how subtle differences in tiny crystals of butterfly wings create stunningly varied patterns of color, even among closely related species. If the team can figure out how to replicate the wings' light-manipulating properties, the discovery could lead to new...

Moths Use Hearing Differently When Picking Up Mating Calls
2013-07-08 14:30:46

Brett Smith for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A joint team of Japanese and Danish researchers has found various moth species taking Salt-n-Pepa's suggestion to the next level -- talking about sex in a variety of ways. Lepidopterists have thought for years that moths use their sense of hearing to avoid predation from bats. However, the new study, which was published in Scientific Reports, revealed that their tiny ears are also used to detect the mating whispers of other moths....

Plant Distress Signals Can Attract Enemies
2013-07-02 15:02:35

Frontiers Plants that emit an airborne distress signal in response to herbivory may actually attract more enemies, according to a new study published in the open-access journal Frontiers in Plant Science. A team of researchers from Switzerland found that the odor released by maize plants under attack by insects attract not only parasitic wasps, which prey on herbivorous insects, but also caterpillars of the Egyptian cotton leafworm moth Spodoptera littoralis, a species that feeds on...

British Butterfly Needs Warm Weather This Summer For Survival
2013-06-10 11:38:26

University of Exeter Butterflies are extremely sensitive to changes in temperature and new research has revealed that when summer weather turns bad the silver-spotted skipper battles for survival. The butterfly, which previously faced extinction from habitat loss, is recovering following conservation efforts but the recent cool wet summers in England have almost stalled its progress. A 27 year study by researchers at the University of Exeter in collaboration with the University of York,...

First Schaus Female Found In A Year Raises Hope For Revival Of Species
2013-06-03 20:14:14

University of Florida The fate of a species may rest upon a single butterfly captured in late May by University of Florida lepidopterists. A UF research technician netted a female Schaus swallowtail in Biscayne National Park on Elliott Key, the first capture of a female since a multi-agency work group got a permit to do so last year. The Schaus population has declined so much that last year the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) issued UF an emergency permit to collect eggs....

Olfactory Signals Help Female Moths Choose Best Egg-laying Sites
2013-06-03 11:00:17

Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology Small changes in the composition of green leaf volatiles induced by herbivory guide ovipositing female moths to unattacked plants Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Jena, Germany, discovered that the ability of Manduca sexta moths to recognize changes in the profile of volatile compounds released by plants being attacked by Manduca caterpillars allows them to lay their eggs on plants that are less likely to be attacked...


Latest Lepidoptera Reference Libraries

Black Stream Glider, Neurothemis fulvia
2013-07-25 14:24:03

The black stream glider (Neurothemis fulvia) is a species of dragonfly that is native to India and neighboring areas. It is typically found near forested areas with slow moving streams and canals. It can be seen perching on many objects within these areas like aquatic plants, and boulders. The black stream glider is medium in size, with males holding an average abdomen length of up to 1.1 inches and females holding an abdomen that reaches a length of up to .9 inches. Both males and females...

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2009-04-28 21:04:39

The Plutella xylostella is often referred to as the Diamondback or Cabbage moth. This species is has a brief lifespan of only 14 days and is thought to have originated in the Mediterranean region of Europe, but has since dispersed across the world. This species is capable of reproducing quickly and can travel great distances. Diamondback are considered serious pests in warmer climates when the absence of a harsh winter prevents their eggs from being destroyed. The moths are resistant to...

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2009-04-28 21:01:20

The Argema mittrei, more commonly known as the Comet or Moon Moth, is an endangered species. It is a native of Madagascar and that is the only place where one can observe them in the wild. This large silk moth can be bred in captivity and is one of the world's largest moths. Males have an average wing span of nearly 8 inches and a tail span of almost 6 inches. The lifespan of an adult moth is only 4-5 days and they are capable of reproduction from day 1. Their cocoons are uniquely...

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2009-04-28 20:58:59

The Agrotis infusa or Bogong moth is a species of nocturnal moth that in spring will swarm in great numbers around public buildings in Canberra, Australia. They are commonly found in Southern parts of Australia featuring a wingspan of one and three quarters inches and are brown or black in color with stout bodies covered with long thick scales. Larvae are often called cutworms and feed on a variety of plants of which they "cut" pieces and carry them back to their burrows for food. Adult...

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2008-08-06 17:51:14

The Giant Leopard Moth (Hypercompe scribonia), also known as the Eyed Tiger Moth, is a moth of the Arctiidae family. It is distributed throughout the southern and eastern United States from New England to Mexico. This species has a wingspan of 3 inches. The wings are bright white with a pattern of neat black blotches, some hollow and some solid. The abdomen is dark blue with orange markings. The male has a narrow yellow line on the sides. Its legs have black and white bands. Adult moths...

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Word of the Day
mallemaroking
  • Nautical, the visiting and carousing of sailors in the Greenland ships.
This word is apparently from a confusion of two similar Dutch words: 'mallemerok,' a foolish woman, and 'mallemok,' a name for some persons among the crew of a whaling vessel.