- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
The Bohart Museum of Entomology will host its annual Moth Night--free and family friendly--from 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 3. The event takes place the week following National Moth Week, July 20-28.
Blacklighting will take place just outside the museum, located in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge Building, 455 Crocker Lane. For blacklighting, the Bohart scientists use a hanging white sheet that's illuminated by ultraviolet (UV) light and powered by a generator. Throughout the evening, visitors can see what insects are attracted to the white sheets.Several scientists will be on hand to discuss moths and answer questions. They include senior museum scientist SteveHeydon of theBohart Museum; Jeff Smith, curator of the the moth and butterfly specimens; andBohart associates "Moth Man" John DeBenedictis and GregKareofelas. The best time to see the moths in the light traps is later in the evening, closer to 9:30 or 10, according to LynnKimsey, director of the museum, andTabatha Yang, education and outreach coordinator. Indoor activities--checking out the displays and participating in the craft activity--are planned prior to theblacklighting.
Bohart associate Emma Cluff curated a hallway display featuring silkworm moths and silk that links entomology and culture. The silkworm moths are from the Bohart museum collection, and the silk cloth has been donated by silkworm moth authority Richard Peigler, a biology professor at the University of the Incarnate Word, San Antonio, Texas. "He sent us a collection of more than 10 pieces of cloth and several pieces of jewelry that utilize cocoons," Cluff said. "He has sent similar collections of cloth to other research institutions."
"These textiles represent work that has been done for centuries, and in some cases millennia, throughout Asia," Cluff said. "The relationship between these artists and the insects that provide their materials is beautiful and elaborate and we wanted to bring it to light."
The free family craft activity will involve creating silk moth cocoon necklaces. "Kids will be able to color and string white cocoons and make necklaces or bracelets with them," Cluff said.
Free refreshments--hot chocolate and cookies-- will be served.
Last year more than 140 spectators attended Moth Night. The first insects to show up were the scarab beetles or "June bugs" (referring to certain species of scarabs). Beetle expert Fran Keller, assistant professor at Folsom Lake College who received her doctorate in entomology from UC Davis, identified the first scarab beetle to arrive as a Polyphylla sp. or lined June beetle.
Bohart associate and "Moth Man" John De Benedictis listed the species sighted at Moth Night by family. Among them:
- NOCTUIDAE: Spodoptera exigua (Beet Armyworm Moth), Proxenus sp. (probably P. mindara)
- GEOMETRIDAE: Prochoerodes truxaliata
- PYRALIDAE: Ehestiodes gilvescentella
- TORTRICIDAE: Cydia latiferreana (Filbertworm Moth), Grapholita prunivora (Lesser Appleworm Moth)
- GELECHIIDAE: Leucogniella sp. (probably L. distincta)
- TINEDAE: Oinophila v-flava
- ACROLOPHIDAE: Amydria sp. (cannot tell genus or species without dissecting. Likely Pseudopsalta confusella.)
DeBenedictis said a young girl collected the Prochoerodes truxaliata, a moth that feeds on coyote bush as a caterpillar.Some facts about moths, from the National Moth Week website:
- Moths are among the most diverse and successful organisms on earth.
- Scientists estimate there are 150,000 to more than 500,000 moth species.
- Their colors and patterns are either dazzling or so cryptic that they define camouflage. Shapes and sizes span the gamut from as small as a pinhead to as large as an adult's hand.
- Most moths are nocturnal--others fly like butterflies during the day.
- Finding moths can be as simple as leaving a porch light on and checking it after dark. Serious moth aficionados use special lights and baits to attract them.
The Bohart Museum houses a global collection of nearly eight million specimens. It is also the home of the seventh largest insect collection in North America, and the California Insect Survey, a storehouse of the insect biodiversity. Noted entomologist Richard M. Bohart (1913-2007) founded the museum. It maintains a live "petting zoo," featuring Madagascar hissing cockroaches, walking sticks, tarantulas, and praying mantids. The museum's gift shop, open year around, includes T-shirts, sweatshirts, books, jewelry, posters, insect-collecting equipment and insect-themed candy.
The Bohart Museum's regular hours have changed for the summer season. As of July 3, the Bohart is hosting 30-minute tours starting at 2:30 and 3:30 pm. No reservations are required and all ages are welcome. Admission is free, but donations are always welcomed. The Bohart is open to walk-in visitors Monday through Thursday from 1 to 5 p.m. It is closed from 9 a.m. to noon to walk-in visits (the insect museum conducts many tours and outreach programs during those times).More information on the Bohart Museum is available on the website or by contacting (530) 752-0493 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Author: Kathy Keatley Garvey
Some 145 people visited the UC Davis Bohart Museum of Entomology's open house last Saturday night between 8 and 11 in celebration of National Moth Week. Most stayed for the entire time, said Tabatha Yang, education and outreach coordinator.
Bohart Museum associate Greg Kareofelas and senior museum scientist Steve Heydon set up a blacklighting display: a white sheet and a mercury vapor lighting to attract moths and other flying insects.
“We recorded more than 15 species,” said Kareofelas, who has collected moths in his backyard in Davis for some 25 years. The first moth to arrive was the alfalfa looper moth, Trichopusia ni, and “the most striking,” he said, “was the grape leaffolder, Desmia funeralis.”
Inside the museum, located in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge Building on Crocker Lane, moths and butterflies took center stage. Visitors expressed amazement at the sizes and colors. Bohart associate Jeff Smith of Sacramento, who curates the butterfly and moth specimens, showed the worldwide collection and fielded questions.
Bohart associates and UC Davis students Lohitashwa Garikipati and Emma Cluff, UC Davis students, showed the museum's live petting zoo, which includes Madagascar hissing cockroaches, walking sticks, praying mantids and walking sticks.
The Bohart visitors gazed at the photo of President Trump and remarked how tiny the moth is. The wingspan of the orange-yellow moth is less than one centimeter.
Nazari published the piece on the Trump moth Jan. 17, 2016 in the journal Zookeys and explained the name: “The reason for this choice of names is to bring wider public attention to the need to continue protecting fragile habitats in the U.S. that still contain many undescribed species."
Three Trump moths were collected in a Malaise trap in one of the washes on the east side of the dunes. In a contract with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, the Bohart scientists have collected nearly 2,000 species of insects from about 200 square miles of sand, according to Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum of Entomology and professor of entomology at UC Davis. Some six percent are new to science.
Of the Trump moths collected, Nazari kept one in Canada, the norm--but the holotype, the one he determined as the standard for the species--is a permanent part of the Bohart, said Tabatha Yang, education and outreach coordinator.
The Neopalpa donaldtrumpi belongs to the family, Gelechiidae of the Lepitoptera order.
The next summer open house, also free and open to the public, is Sunday, Aug. 27 from 1 to 4 p.m. the theme is “Bark Beetles and Trees, Forest Health in California." The event is in collaboration with Steve Seybold, USDA Forest Service entomologist and an associate of the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology. He and his students and staff will be there to show displays and answer questions.
The Bohart Museum, directed by Lynn Kimsey, professor of entomology at UC Davis, houses a global collection of nearly eight million specimens. It is also the home of the seventh largest insect collection in North America, and the California Insect Survey, a storehouse of the insect biodiversity. Noted entomologist Richard M. Bohart (1913-2007) founded the museum.
The museum's gift shop, open year around, includes T-shirts, sweatshirts, books, jewelry, posters, insect-collecting equipment and insect-themed candy.
The Bohart Museum's regular hours are from 9 a.m. to noon and 1 to 5 p.m. Mondays through Thursdays. The museum is closed to the public on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays and on major holidays. Admission is free.