Hummingbird hawk-moth feeding on flower, Sardinia, Italy
© patriziomartorana/iStock/Getty Images Plu
It’s Moth Week. Let’s go ‘mothing’
In the insect world, it’s butterflies who get all the glory. But we’d argue it’s their relatives, moths, that have the better story. With more than 160,000 species of moths around the world, moths outnumber butterfly species roughly 10 to 1. While most are nocturnal, the hummingbird hawk-moth on our homepage today breaks the mould. Found throughout Africa, Asia and Europe, it’s shown here in the daylight of southern Sardinia, sipping nectar with its a straw-like appendage known as a proboscis. Like a hummingbird, the moth makes a soft buzzing sound as it hovers over the flowers whose nectar it feeds on exclusively.National Moth Week, held each year during the last week of July, began in the US but has since spread to other countries worldwide. ‘Moth-ers’ around the world are encouraged to be citizen scientists. You can participate by looking for moths in your own garden (hint: leave a porch light on) and documenting your findings online. Happy ‘mothing’!