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Have you ever been camping at a beautiful state park and gone to the restroom after dark?  If so, chances are you were either amazed by the diversity and abundance of moths hanging out by the light outside the door or you were entirely creeped out by their sheer numbers and odd appearance.   Whether you are curious about moths or have mottephobia (yes there is a real word for fear of moths and learning more about them can help) the first lecture of our 2018 series should not be missed.

What exactly are these nocturnal beings fluttering by you in the darkness?

Moths are intriguing.  Some, like the Luna Moth and Cecropia Moth, are large and beautiful.  Others are small, non-descript and don’t even have a common name (some don’t even have a scientific name).  It is believed that there are over 160,000 different species of moths on earth, compared with only 17,500 of butterflies.  Moths have developed a bad reputation not only as creatures of the night, but because of destructive and invasive gypsy moths, winter moths and even moths that damage clothes.  There’s also the pantry moth that might be lurking in your cupboard.

Moths live the same sort of life style as butterflies beginning life as an egg, hatching to become a caterpillar, then on to become a pupa where they undergo metamorphosis into an adult.  While there may be some bad eggs out there, there are plenty of things about moths that are interesting, beautiful and cool.   Moths are masters of camouflage.  They are pollinators.  Some male moths can detect a female from miles away!

Our guest speaker, Dave Small, is an amazing naturalist.  I have always admired his enthusiasm, passion and knowledge whether he is leading a trip in the field or doing a presentation in the classroom.  I am thrilled that he is coming to Norcross and I bet you are all surprised that we requested he speak about moths and not dragonflies!

Dave is the president of the Athol Bird and Nature Club.  If you’re ever looking for something to do north of here, check out ABNC’s Miller’s River Enviromental Center  list of events.  They offer lots of great programs and field trips on a variety of topics.

See you on Saturday!  For a complete listing of our winter lectures, click here.

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