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Latest Moths Stories

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2010-08-26 23:34:48

The dilemma for tobacco hornworm larvae: By feeding on tobacco leaves they unintentionally and rapidly transform plant substances into attractant signals that betray their location to their own natural enemies -- with lethal consequencesPlants have developed a sophisticated defense system. They can not only directly fend off herbivores by producing toxins, but also do so indirectly by emitting odorant molecules into the atmosphere that are perceived by predatory insects; these predators are...

2009-10-16 14:19:00

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., Oct. 16 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- To avoid becoming a bat's tasty treat, a species of tiger moth plays a trick with sound. The moth can make up to 450 ultrasonic clicks in a tenth of a second to jam the hungry bat's sonar and escape death. The discovery was made by Aaron Corcoran, a Wake Forest University graduate student, and William Conner, professor of biology at Wake Forest. "This is the first example of prey that jams biological sonar," Conner says....

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2009-08-31 11:50:00

Travelers to the neotropics"”the tropical lands of the Americas"”might be forgiven for thinking that all of the colorful insects flittering over sunny puddles or among dense forest understory are butterflies. In fact, many are not. Some are moths that have reinvented themselves as butterflies, converging on the daytime niche typically dominated by their less hairy relatives. Now, a new revision of the taxonomic relationships among one such group of insects, the subfamily...

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2009-08-14 10:20:00

Know-how developed at the UFZ is already being applied in Australia and Israel, where monitoring networks are being set up. In Germany the UFZ set up the Butterfly Monitoring Scheme five years ago together with the German Society for the Conservation of Butterflies and Moths (GfS). Since then, more than 500 volunteers have been counting and recording butterflies with a standardized method all over the country, providing the researchers with important data on distributions and trends of...

2009-07-09 12:54:13

University of California-Santa Barbara scientists say they have identified the genes that are responsible for changing a flower's colors. Professor Scott Hodges and graduate student Nathan Derieg said they studied red columbines pollinated by hummingbirds and white or yellow columbines pollinated by hawkmoths to document the evolution of such flowers in North America. They said their research indicates a color shift from red to white or yellow has occurred five times in that region. What is...

2009-06-12 13:22:09

A spike in the number of ermine moths has left trees in parts of Britain covered entirely in cocoons of silk resembling giant spider webs, observers said. I was quite excited when I first saw it because it gives quite a beautiful effect as it looks silky in the sunlight, Deborah Collick, parks manager in Maidstone, Kent, told The Daily Telegraph in a story published Friday. Adult ermine moths lay up to 400 eggs each. Hatching larvae then eat the tree leaves and spin themselves into cocoons of...

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2009-03-05 10:05:00

Moths need just the essence of a flower's scent to identify it, according to new research from The University of Arizona in Tucson. Although a flower's odor can be composed of hundreds of chemicals, a moth uses just a handful to recognize the flower. It's like identifying a piece of music from hearing only the notes played by a few key instruments, said lead researcher Jeffrey A. Riffell. "The moth isn't paying attention to all the chemicals at the same time," Riffell said. "It's actually...

2008-07-19 00:00:22

By LARRY CAPLAN As is usual for this time of year, numerous insect, disease and weather-related problems are creating problems for local gardeners. One interesting injury I'm getting a surprising number of calls on deals with the fruit of blackberries. Some of the drupelets (the tiny "bumps" on the fruit) are failing to turn red and black, but instead remain white. Sometimes the drupelets turn brown and shrivel. There is no rot, signs of mold or insects. This is a condition known as...

2007-09-15 06:00:55

By Richard Nunnally, Richmond Times-Dispatch, Va. Sep. 15--Q:I grow tomatoes every year and find those big green worms on them. Some have white lumps on their backs. I've heard they are some kind of eggs. Is that true? If so, are they harmful? Answer: The worms you're seeing are tomato hornworms. They are common and enjoy eating the leaves of tomato plants. The white lumps are the egg cases for a parasitic wasp. This wasp stings the worm and deposits its eggs on the worm's back. As the...

2007-06-29 06:04:15

By Fred Davis, The Beaumont Enterprise, Texas Jun. 29--Consider them the secret operatives of the insect world. They quietly show up, generally high in the trees, and make a mess of the foliage with their cotton candy-like fortress that is akin to a cobweb on steroids. They show up sporadically throughout the year, long enough to defile the landscape and turn people's stomachs in disgust because they're such a nuisance. And then they're gone. The dreaded webworm -- as it's been...


Latest Moths Reference Libraries

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2009-04-28 21:10:26

The Plodia interpunctella or Indianmeal moth is a member of the Pyralidae family and occasionally referred to as the North American High-Flyer. The larvae are also called waxworms that feed on dry grains and cereals. The females of the species can lay any where from 60 to 400 eggs in her lifetime. She will do so where there is a good food supply for the larvae. Each egg is less than 0.02 inches in diameter and tends not adhere well to the surface on which it is laid. The eggs will...

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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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2005-09-12 11:59:19

The Ailanthus webworm (Atteva punctella) is an Ermine moth found commonly in the United States. There origin of the Ailanthus webworm is clouded in uncertainty, but it is thought to be native to South Florida and the American tropics, with the original larval host plant, the Paradise Tree (Simarouba glauca). Tree-of-Heaven (Ailanthus altissima), a tree originally from China, has been widely introduced and Atteva punctella has jumped to this new host plant (giving it its common name,...

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2005-09-09 11:54:00

The Atlas moth (Attacus atlas) is a large saturniid moth found in the tropical and subtropical forests of Southeast Asia, and is common across the Malay archipelago to Indonesia. In India, Atlas moths are cultivated for their silk in a non-commercial capacity; unlike that produced by the related Silkworm moth (Bombyx mori), Atlas moth silk is secreted as broken strands. This brown, wool-like silk is thought to have greater durability and is known as "fagara." Atlas moth cocoons have been...

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