Nature: Butterflies and Moths

Pearly Wood Nymph 珍珠木仙女 (Family Noctuidae, Nocturnal Moths)

In the dark shadows of the night loveliness may surround us and we would not know it. This beautiful night moth, like a pearl hidden in the folds of an oyster, must be searched out and found in the darkness to be appreciated. Such a moth sometimes comes to a light, but more often it is captured by putting out a sweet bait on tree trunks to which the moths come. Such a bait is one made of a mixture of decaying bananas, fermented beer and molasses, which some moths seem to love. The collector then goes out very quietly in the night darkness, carrying a flashlight, turning the light carefully on the trees where the bait has been put. What a mysterious adventure this becomes when you see such beauties of the night as the Pearly Wood-nymph of the under-wing moths sipping greedily at the sweet lure.

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Nature: Butterflies and Moths

Luna Moth 月形天蚕蛾 (Family Saturnidae, Silk Moths)

Where the moonlight sends its liquid rays through the leaves of night and the scents of honeysuckle and thyme, sweet gum and mint and evening primrose fill the air with perfumed magic, there comes on the warm waves of the summer air a winged creature more fairy-like than any other that dwell in the woods. In fact, you can well imagine stories of fairies arising because of people seeing Luna Moths in their nightly wanderings. When the moonlight strikes a Luna it seems to glow as with fire, the white body a gem of light, the green wings shining like emeralds and the red feathery antennae and red eyes like gleaming bits of fire opal or ruby. The Luna is a creature of utter grace, wafting sometimes slowly through the air with the mysterious silence of a green ghost, other times suddenly flashing its wings like bright swords as it flies at great speed out of the depths of a dark canyon. It is found over most of the cast and as far west as Texas and the Great Plains.

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Nature: Butterflies and Moths

Tomato Sphinx 番茄天蛾 (Family Sphingidae, Sphinx Moths)

This giant hawk moth, with a wing-spread of almost five inches, is such a powerful flier that sometimes ships a thousand miles at sea have found one clinging exhausted to the mast. Almost all over North, South, and Central America, except in the regions of great cold, this great journey is found. If, on a summer evening, you look into the darkening sky and see one of the wings and the speed and sureness of its flight.

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Nature: Butterflies and Moths

Pink Star Moth 粉红星蛾 (Family Noctuidae, Nocturnal Moths)

Along the southern border of the United States, many pretty tropical moths venture into our territory. This beautiful little pink moth is found in southern New Mexico and Arizona and in northern Mexico. In the summer warm southwestern darkness it comes silently to open flowers, not hovering like a hawk moth, but creeping in among the petals to sip its full. Like great numbers of other moths little or nothing is known about its life.

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