365 Nature – Day 162

In 2016 I’m doing a 365 Nature project. Each day of the year I will post something here about nature. It may be any format, a photo, video, audio, sketch or entry from my nature journal. It could be a written piece. Each day I will connect to nature in some way and share it here by the end of that day. You can keep up-to-date by subscribing to the RSS feed or be notified by email. See all the 365 Nature posts.

June is also 30 Days Wild and I’m participating again this year.


Today we left Seattle in the afternoon to go camping. It started raining a bit when we arrived and after we finished setting up camp, we went for a walk and then the rain really started and we got drenched. One of the first things I did when we arrived was…

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365 Nature – Day 96

In 2016 I’m doing a 365 Nature project. Each day of the year I will post something here about nature. It may be any format, a photo, video, audio, sketch or entry from my nature journal. It could be a written piece. Each day I will connect to nature in some way and share it here by the end of that day. You can keep up-to-date by subscribing to the RSS feed or be notified by email. See all the 365 Nature posts.


Last night I attended a talk about Pacific Northwest moths and while it was fairly basic, I did learn one thing I had been trying to find the answer for, how many moths are in the state. Worldwide, there are approximately 20,000 butterfly species, but there are over 160,000 moth species. In Washington state there are only 150 species of butterflies and about……3,000 species of…

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365 Nature – Day 84

In 2016 I’m doing a 365 Nature project. Each day of the year I will post something here about nature. It may be any format, a photo, video, audio, sketch or entry from my nature journal. It could be a written piece. Each day I will connect to nature in some way and share it here by the end of that day. You can keep up-to-date by subscribing to the RSS feed or be notified by email. See all the 365 Nature posts.


Last spring we had our house rewired, a full electrical upgrade, and as part of the process the electricians replaced our porch lights. Always trying to be as ecologically friendly as possible we put in LED light bulbs at our front and back doors. The downside I never foresaw, was the dramatic decline in moths attracted to our porch lights. I had made it regular…

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Mothers Unite! (No children required)

This was originally published on Native Plants & Wildlife Gardens.

Mother: One who watches moths.

This week is National Moth Week and although it’s nearly over, you still have time to get out and see some moths. Moths are one of nature’s most interesting insects, and incredibly numerous. Think a moth is drab and boring? Do a quick search for plume moths, or a Rosy Maple Moth. Personally, I love the subtle beauty of the shapes and patterns of moths. They have more natural, understated beauty like Ingrid Bergman while butterflies are flashier and brighter like Marilyn Monroe. While butterflies get the vast majority of the glory, moths outnumber them 14-1. There are 11,000 species in North America and over 142,000 in the world. They often fly at night making them seem less numerous. Unlike other night prowlers like bats, moths are easy to find and watch in your…

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Book Review:: Discovering Moths: Nighttime Jewels in Your Own Backyard

Discovering Moths: Nighttime Jewels in Your Own Backyard, by John Himmelman, is a truly wonderful book which I really enjoyed reading. It’s full of information about moths, written in a way that educates without feeling like a text book. While the author takes pride in writing in a way that a layperson can understand, that doesn’t mean it’s lacking in detail or scientific terms. By the end of the book I was ready to run out to start finding moths, which was unfortunate since it’s currently the middle of winter. When I was finished I felt I had learned a great deal about an area I didn’t realize I was so ignorant about.

The book begins with a commentary about a typical walk he likes to lead to introduce people to the world of moths….

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Design for Moths

Moth species outnumber butterflies in North America 14-1 and they have so many species that in the animal world, only beetles have more. There are over 142,000 species world-wide, more than ten-thousand in North America and in the Pacific Northwest there are as many as ten times as many moth species as butterfly species. They have more varied patterns and like butterflies, act as important pollinators. Their caterpillars also provide important food for songbirds, particularly breeding birds and young as well as bats and even spiders.

So why are there countless resources for designing butterfly habitat, but only a handful for moths? Unfortunately, moths get a bad rap as a pest and they’re more likely to be found in the pest section of extension service’s websites while butterflies are on the attracting wildlife sections. The truth is that less than one-tenth of one percent of moth species are the type…

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