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Latest Lepidoptera Stories

Monarch Butterflies Won't Migrate North Unless They Can Chill Out First In Mexico
2013-02-22 10:09:45

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online Millions of monarch butterflies from across the eastern U.S. begin a southward migration each fall to escape the frigid temperatures of the northern boundary of their range. They travel up to 2,000 miles to reach an overwintering site in a very specific grove of fir trees in central Mexico. A new study from the University of Massachusetts Medical School (UMass) suggests the butterflies require the exposure to coldness in the...

Lepidoptera Species Found In Jamaica
2012-12-04 08:13:18

April Flowers for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online A study describing a new species of Lepidoptera found in Jamaica's last remaining wilderness was recently published in the journal Tropical Lepidoptera Research by a team of scientists from the University of Florida. The new species belongs to the skipper family of butterflies. This is the first new butterfly discovered in Jamaica since 1995 and scientists hope that the native butterfly will encourage conservation of the Cockpit...

2012-11-28 11:21:37

When herbivores such as caterpillars feed, plants may "call for help" by emitting volatiles, which can indirectly help defend the plants. The volatiles recruit parasitoids that infect, consume and kill the herbivores, to the benefit of the plant. However, such induced plant odors can also be detected by other organisms. A new study published November 27 in the open access journal PLOS Biology shows how secondary parasitoids ('hyperparasitoids') can take advantage of these plant signals to...

Europe Being Invaded By The American Oak Skeletonizer Moth
2012-11-19 11:20:18

Naturalis Biodiversity Center The North American Oak Skeletonizer, a very small moth, has invaded North West Europe since 1989, and feeds commonly on planted Northern Red Oaks in the Netherlands, Belgium and adjacent Germany. It is hypothesized that cocoons attached to any material were transported by air, eg by NATO aircraft, after which the moths found their favorite hostplant commonly planted. This is only the second North American insect ever found in Europe on the American Red...

Disappearing Butterfly Mystery Solved
2012-10-21 10:19:10

redOrbit Staff & Wire Reports — Your Universe Online Using radar, researchers have successfully tracked the autumn migration of the painted lady, solving once and for all the mystery of what happened to the butterfly species after it disappeared from the UK at summer's end. While some believed that the colorful species of creature simply died out when the season ended, new research published in the journal Ecography reports they actually flee the UK and head south, migrating...

Monarch Butterfly's Survival Ensured By Trapping Weevils
2012-10-01 16:47:23

Ensuring the monarch butterfly's survival by saving its milkweed habitat could result from U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) studies initially intended to improve detection of boll weevils with pheromone traps. Charles Suh and his colleagues at the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) Areawide Pest Management Research Unit in College Station, Texas, have found a pheromone formula that is attractive to a major milkweed pest, the milkweed stem weevil. The discovery stems from research...

2012-09-19 23:01:20

Dorothy and Leo Keeler are wildlife photographers and founding members of the International League of Conservation Photographers. Their newest project offers creative incentives to help restore monarch butterflies across North America. The Milkweed for Monarchs Butterfly Garden Project is posted on Kickstarter.com and is designed to help restore monarchs by offering creative gifts to people who contribute to their butterfly garden project and are inspired to create Monarch Waystations of...


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
grass-comber
  • A landsman who is making his first voyage at sea; a novice who enters naval service from rural life.
According to the OED, a grass-comber is also 'a sailor's term for one who has been a farm-labourer.'