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Macro-Moth Study
Noel McFarland
moths, moths, moths .... and other stuff!
BACKYARD 7 — FIVE ACRES OF MOTHS
SOUTHEASTERN ARIZONA
in the SE. HUACHUCA MOUNTAINS,
COCHISE COUNTY (HEREFORD DISTRICT)

homemoth familiesmona #'s foodplants seasonal chartsmaps linksgalleryspecimen records << previousarticles next >>
Dedication
This website is dedicated, with deepest admiration, to the memory of JEAN HENRI FABRE (1823-1915), undisputed King of all the (entomological) "Back-Yarders"! ...
Introduction
A long-term study documenting the occurrence of more than 900 macro-moth species on 5 acres in lower ASH CANYON (oak/manzanita woodland and grassland ecotone, at 5170 ft. elevation, 13 mi. S. of Sierra Vista).
What to Expect at this Site
This site is not for moth identifications, but for flight periods, foodplants, behavior and other aspects of the life histories of moths found at this single location ....
SOME POSSIBLE (perhaps valid?) REASONS for visiting this "Backyard" website
More about what the site is, and is not trying to accomplish ...
About the Backyard Concept
.... the backyard entomologist can (potentially) still uncover much that is "new" or previously unknown/ unpublished in the vast field of entomology....
Motivations: Why Publish This Material?
In many of the larger insect groups (moths included), our knowledge is extremely limited. For thousands of insect species, there is absolutely nothing known beyond the fact that the entity has, at some time in the past, been described and given a scientific name ....
Summarizing How These Projects Evolved
Someone has to be "out there" in the real world every night, actually making the observations and gathering voucher specimens, or there would be nothing to report ....
What is Being Collected?
Someone has to be "out there" in the real world every night, actually making the observations and gathering voucher specimens, or there would be nothing to report!!....
About the Photographs
As excellent, unfaded (i.e., more recent) specimens become available, more photos will be produced for inclusion on this website. ....
Bias in Photo Representation
The moths FIRST to be depicted here will be all of the countless smaller species the ones that the "trophy-hunters" never see and regularly stomp on, while grabbing at everything BIG (.... as is the American way)....
Moth Identifications
A great majority of the SMALLER macro-moths in this locality cannot be found in any existing books or field guides....
Taxonomy & Classification (the names)
TAXONOMY is an art as much as it is an inexact science! It merely reflects the personal opinions (and inclinations) of the acknowledged "experts" of the day.
About Moth Families & Subfamilies
The following 14 "MACRO"-MOTH FAMILIES have been recorded on our 5 acres in Ash Canyon to date: ....
Some Thoughts About Moth Surveys
Some tips for those who would undertake moth survey work: ....
Abundance Ratings Defined (8 Categories)
The abundance-ratings (A, B, C, or D) refine all of these records a bit further, by giving at least some indication regarding the relative abundance of each species at the study location. ....
About the Flight Periods
All records, from the earliest to the latest dates of known local occurrence, are included on these "phenograms", and they summarize all the years of this survey....
Interpretation of the Flight-Phenograms
Even with the less common spp. (B- down to D), "peaks" can still be quite apparent, even though the actual numbers coming to light will be vastly lower for the scarce species than for those rated in the B+ to A+ range....
Miscellaneous Comments on Black Lights
In this location, that same 40-watt uv. tube (and its fixture) continued to perform, almost nightly, for the next 25 years - after already at least 2 decades of regular use by its original owner, before I inherited it!
Peculiarities of Moth Activity
n quite a number of unrelated moths (various families), there may be a very noticeable difference seen in the numbers of one sex versus the other coming to lights....
Prime Time = Full-Moon-Plus-Ten
How many times have you been told by experienced elder moth-ers to be sure to plan your next moth collecting trip for the-dark-of-the-moon ...
How To Obtain Perfect (Moth) Specimens
I have been asked repeatedly over the decades, to publish something regarding the details of my specimen-spreading techniques. ....
To Kill Or Not To Kill??
RE: the debate over collecting vs. observing only ....
Beating or Sweeping for Larvae
In addition to simple DIURNAL and NOCTURNAL searching for larvae, beating or shaking plants over a sheet or other piece of material spread on the ground ....
ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS & DETERMINATIONS
Ron H. Leuschner provided by far the majority of these identifications or determinations ....
PHOTO CREDITS
The numerous photos always include the name of the photographer ...
REFERENCES
Listed below are ALL of the works that are referred to at this website ....
GLOSSARY & ABBREVIATIONS + SYMBOLS USED
CERTAIN TECHNICAL TERMS MAY NOT BE KNOWN TO EVERY READER; HOPEFULLY, ALL OF THESE ARE DEFINED BELOW ....
Miscellaneous Tidbits Dept.
HOW GOOD IS YOUR COTTON?
SUPERFAMILIES AND SUBFAMILIES
The HIGHER CLASSIFICATION employed below follows Kitching & Rawlins ....
A FEW GENERIC SYNONYMS
IF YOU CANNOT FIND THE GENERIC (GENUS) NAME OF THE MOTH YOU ARE SEEKING IN THE MAIN INDEX, CHECK TO SEE IF IT APPEARS BELOW ....
MONA #'s
Moths of North America (MONA) or Hodges Number List
SEASONAL CHARTS
NUMBERS of Macro-Moth Species by MONTH, Lower Ash Canyon ....
EXTERNAL LINKS
Links to related entomological and botanical external sites ...
MAPS
Some related geographic and vegetation maps ....


Five Acres of Moths
www.fiveacresofmoths.org

A long-term study documenting the occurrence of more than 900 macro-moth species on 5 acres in lower ASH CANYON (oak/manzanita woodland and grassland ecotone, at 5170 ft. elevation, 13 mi. S. of Sierra Vista).

Dedication

Introduction

What to Expect at this Site

SOME POSSIBLE (perhaps valid?) REASONS for visiting this "Backyard" website

About the Backyard Concept

Motivations: Why Publish This Material?

Summarizing How These Projects Evolved

What is Being Collected?

About the Photographs

Bias in Photo Representation

Moth Identifications

Taxonomy & Classification (the names)

About Moth Families & Subfamilies

Some Thoughts About Moth Surveys

Abundance Ratings Defined (8 Categories)

About the Flight Periods

Interpretation of the Flight-Phenograms

Miscellaneous Comments on Black Lights

Peculiarities of Moth Activity

Prime Time = Full-Moon-Plus-Ten

How To Obtain Perfect (Moth) Specimens

To Kill Or Not To Kill??

Beating or Sweeping for Larvae

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS & DETERMINATIONS

PHOTO CREDITS

REFERENCES

GLOSSARY & ABBREVIATIONS + SYMBOLS USED

Miscellaneous Tidbits Dept.

SUPERFAMILIES AND SUBFAMILIES

A FEW GENERIC SYNONYMS

MONA #'s

SEASONAL CHARTS

EXTERNAL LINKS

MAPS

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