National Un-Moth Week?

This almost was the week that “wasn’t”. I can’t remember a time when I set aside a calendar week for a specific effort (National Moth Week) and soooo many things got in the way. The multitude of hurdles that Everyday Life presented from July 17-24 has been a bit overwhelming, especially for someone like myself who is admittedly poor at multi-tasking. Some of the hurdles were self-imposed (e.g. scheduling non-mothing social events in the evenings—What was I thinking?) and others were out of the blue. The most tragic was that just as NMW began, my beloved Canon SX620 IS point-and-hope camera decided to die. The sensors went haywire and it could no longer figure out what I meant to focus on or what settings to use. I have a couple of inferior back-up cameras which filled the gap, but in the end, I had to place an emergency camera order online—and of course the new hardware won’t arrive until after the end of National Moth Week.

Mother Nature didn’t cooperate fully either. We reeeally can’t complain here in CenTex when we’re having a July with below average temps (up until today) and above average rainfall. That’s all wonderful. But a couple of evenings of NMW were lost due to disruptive thunderstorms. Yeah, I know, “Woe is us.” One ill-timed bolt of lightning caused a very brief power outage at my house; my computer had to restart and then my photo editing software decided it had to check its entire library of 125,000 images for errors. Seven hours later, it finally announced that everything was OK and I could continue editing.

The organizers of NMW need to look more carefully at the lunar calendar. This past night, at the climax of NMW, we had a bright full moon. Rule number one in mothing, from fundamental moth behavior, is that nights with a full moon will end up with poor results at artificial lights. Note To NMW Organizers: Look at the lunar calendar for 2022 and figure out when the New Moon (i.e. no moon) will be in July! That should be your target week.

Here in CenTex with it’s high biodiversity, a really good night of mothing in optimal conditions in Spring or Fall might result in the documentation of something on the order of 100 to 150 species of moths. This past week, in several evenings and mornings of effort over seven calendar days, I may have about 55 species of moths to upload. That might seem high by some standards—Sorry, you folks at more northern latitudes—but by Texas standards, that’s rather pitiful.

In the end, I just have to laugh it all off and assert, “Wait ’til next year!”

由使用者 gcwarbler gcwarbler2021年07月24日 20:11 所貼文

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gcwarbler

日期

7月 24, 2021 05:19 CDT

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gcwarbler

日期

7月 24, 2021 05:23 CDT

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gcwarbler

日期

7月 24, 2021 05:22 CDT

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gcwarbler

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7月 22, 2021 04:39 CDT

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什麼

Cochylini

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gcwarbler

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7月 22, 2021 04:48 CDT

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gcwarbler

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7月 24, 2021 05:21 CDT

描述

Just one all week.

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gcwarbler

日期

7月 22, 2021 04:38 CDT

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I don't see this species often here on Salton Drive.

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gcwarbler

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7月 20, 2021 23:01 CDT

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gcwarbler

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7月 17, 2021 22:43 CDT

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Just one all week.

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什麼

雙白帶野螟 (Hymenia perspectalis)

觀察者

gcwarbler

日期

7月 19, 2021 22:36 CDT

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Just one all week.

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gcwarbler

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7月 20, 2021 23:02 CDT

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gcwarbler

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7月 24, 2021 05:18 CDT

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Only one for the week.

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gcwarbler

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7月 20, 2021 05:14 CDT

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Only one for the week.

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什麼

Mocis latipes

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gcwarbler

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7月 22, 2021 04:38 CDT

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Only one for the week.

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gcwarbler

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7月 20, 2021 05:15 CDT

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First for Salton Drive; uncommon in the Austin area.

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gcwarbler

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7月 22, 2021 04:46 CDT

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Much less common here than Jalisco. Only one for the week.

I also saw some interesting behavior from this moth: Occasionally when a Petrophila moth senses a danger, disturbance, or threat, it will briefly raise or flare its wings and then settle back down. This moth did that behavior repeatedly as some minute little Hymenopteran (presumably a would-be parasitic species) made several quick passes at the moth. I managed to capture one moment of that interaction on video. I'm still trying to figure out how to upload a short clip of that edited video.

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gcwarbler

日期

7月 22, 2021 04:37 CDT

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片羽蛾族 ( Platyptiliini)

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gcwarbler

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7月 20, 2021 23:01 CDT

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Only one for the week.

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gcwarbler

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7月 17, 2021 22:40 CDT

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gcwarbler

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7月 24, 2021 05:21 CDT

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gcwarbler

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7月 22, 2021 04:50 CDT

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Urola nivalis

觀察者

gcwarbler

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7月 24, 2021 05:26 CDT

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Only individual all week.

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評論

LOL, I can't but laugh!

發佈由 annikaml 大約 3 年 前

Sorry for your bummer of a moth week. I was wondering about that full moon.

BTW, before the last Timberlake gathering, I bought a new point and shoot camera (same model) just in case mine crashed. For some reason, I was a bit apprehensive about my Canon. It is probably about time for me to go ahead and change out.
Thanks your your post. Sorry, but your woes had me smiling....

發佈由 connlindajo 大約 3 年 前

Man, I'd say you've had your troubles for the year! So the rest of it should be clear sailing, right? To better times ahead!

發佈由 jcochran706 大約 3 年 前

I've got a big smile on this statement, Chuck:
"Rule number one in mothing, from fundamental moth behavior, is that nights with a full moon will end up with poor results at artificial lights."
Maddin Prairie says "hold my beer." ;)
https://www.inaturalist.org/observations?d1=2021-08-21&d2=2021-08-22&place_id=111150&taxon_id=47157&view=species

發佈由 sambiology 大約 3 年 前

Chuck, your 124 species observed at Maddin Prairie looks pretty impressive to me!

發佈由 connlindajo 大約 3 年 前

Sam, Rule number 1A: "Nights with a full moon produce poor results for mothing except if you're in Mitchell County, TX, accompanied by @sambiology and have 12 moths stations scattered over a 1/4 mile of prairie monitored by a bevy of enthusiastic iNatters."

發佈由 gcwarbler 大約 3 年 前

Ooooooooh. I forgot to read that fine print. ;)
I actually am 'lol'ing. :)

發佈由 sambiology 大約 3 年 前

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