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Current Moth News and Events, Moth News Articles.
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Window film could even out the indoor temperature using solar energy
A window film with a specially designed molecule could be capable of taking the edge off the worst midday heat and instead distributing it evenly from morning to evening. The molecule has the unique ability to capture energy from the sun's rays and release it later as heat. This is shown by researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, in the scientific journal Advanced Science. (2019-07-08)

New to science New Zealand moths link mythological deities to James Cameron's films
In an unexpected discovery, two species of macro-moths were described as new species endemic to the South Island, New Zealand. Each is restricted to only a couple of subalpine/alpine localities, which makes them particularly vulnerable to extinction, point out the scientists. Described in the open-access journal Alpine Entomology, the insects were named A. titanica and A. avatar simultaneously in reference to mythological deities and the top-grossing blockbusters by James Cameron: Titanic and Avatar. (2019-06-11)

Four new species of plume moths discovered in Bahamas
Deborah Matthews hunts for plume moths in darkness, waiting for the halo of her headlamp to catch a brief flicker. Her vigilance helped her discover four new species in the Bahamas. (2019-06-07)

Russian scientists make discovery that can help remove gypsy moths from forests
The caterpillars of Lymantria dispar or Gypsy Moth are voracious eaters capable of defoliating entire forests. Sometimes they can even make harm for coniferous forests. Gypsy Moths are widely spread in Europe, Asia and Northern America. (2019-05-20)

Finnish researchers discover a new moth family
Two moth species new to science belonging to a previously unknown genus and family have been found in Kazakhstan, constituting an exceptional discovery. (2019-05-09)

An important function of non-nucleated sperm
Some animals form characteristic infertile spermatozoa called parasperm, which differ in size and shape compared to fertile sperm produced by single males. A research team at the National Institute for Basic Biology in Japan has identified the gene involved in the formation of the apyrene sperm and has revealed the important function of the apyrene sperm in fertilization using the silk moth. (2019-04-29)

Could climate change cause infertility?
A number of plant and animal species could find it increasingly difficult to reproduce if climate change worsens and global temperatures become more extreme -- a stark warning highlighted by new scientific research. (2019-04-15)

Deaf moth evolves sound-production as a warning to outwit its predator
A genus of deaf moth has evolved to develop an extraordinary sound-producing structure in its wings to evade its primary predator the bat. The finding, made by researchers from the University of Bristol and Natural History Museum, is described in Scientific Reports today. (2019-02-05)

Ecological benefits of part-night lighting revealed
Study shows there is no difference in pollination success between part-night lighting and full darkness, highlighting the ecological benefit of switching off our street lights even for short periods in the night. (2019-01-20)

Big genome found in tiny forest defoliator
Drs. Don Gammon and Nick Grishin of UT Southwestern have sequenced the genomes of the European gypsy moth and its even more destructive cousin, the Asian gypsy moth. (2019-01-14)

Scientists forecast where is the highly invasive fall armyworm to strike next
Known to be feeding on many economically important crops, including maize, sugarcane, beet, tomato, potato and cotton, the larvae of the native to the Americas fall armyworm moth already seem to present a huge threat to the world's yield. Moreover, it only took 2 years for the pest to establish throughout sub-Saharan Africa. A study in the open-access journal NeoBiota looks into the factors and likelihood for it to spread to other regions and continents. (2019-01-09)

Antennal sensors allow hawkmoths to make quick moves
All insects use vision to control their position in the air when they fly, but they also integrate information from other senses. Biologists at Lund University have now shown how hawkmoths use mechanosensors in their antennae to control fast flight maneuvers. (2018-12-20)

Experts identify 'tipping point' in tree disease outbreaks
Experts have found a way to model disease progression and predict the 'tipping point' of a disease, providing early warning indicators that an epidemic is imminent and action needs to be taken. (2018-12-18)

Birds can mistake some caterpillars for snakes; can robots help? 
Researchers witnessed a hummingbird defending its nest from what it interpreted to be a snake, but was actually a caterpillar of the moth Oxytenis modestia. The encounter is described in a new paper published in the Ecological Society of America's journal Ecology.  (2018-12-17)

Austrian-Danish research team discover as many as 22 new moth species from across Europe
Following a long-year study of the family of twirler moths, scientists from the Tyrolean State Museum, Austria and the Zoological Museum of the University of Copenhagen have discovered a startling total of 44 new species, including as many as 22 species inhabiting various regions throughout Europe. Given that the Old Continent is the most extensively researched one, their findings, published in the open-access journal ZooKeys, pose fundamental questions about our knowledge of biodiversity. (2018-11-29)

Moths and magnets could save lives
Rice University bioengineers have combined a virus that infects moths with magnetic nanoparticles to create a potential new therapy for inherited genetic diseases like muscular dystrophy, sickle cell, cystic fibrosis, spinal muscular atrophy and some forms of cancer. (2018-11-13)

Resonant mechanism discovery could inspire ultra-thin acoustic absorbers
New research led by academics at the University of Bristol has discovered that the scales on moth wings vibrate and can absorb the sound frequencies used by bats for echolocation (biological sonar). The finding could help researchers develop bioinspired thin and lightweight resonant sound absorbers. (2018-11-12)

Moths survive bat predation through acoustic camouflage fur
Moths are a mainstay food source for bats, which use echolocation to hunt their prey. Scientists are studying how moths have evolved passive defenses over millions of years to resist their primary predators. While some moths have evolved ears that detect the ultrasonic calls of bats, many types of moths remain deaf. In those moths, researchers have found that the insects developed types of 'stealth coating' that serve as acoustic camouflage to evade hungry bats. (2018-11-06)

Newly discovered moth named Icarus sports a flame-shaped mark and prefers high elevations
New species of owlet moth recently discovered to inhabit high-elevation mountains in western North America was named after the Greek mythological character Icarus. In their paper published in the open-access journal ZooKeys, scientists Dr. Lars Crabo and Dr. Christian Schmidt explain that the combination of the distinct flame-shaped mark on the moth's forewing and its high-elevation habitat was quick to remind them of the myth of Icarus. (2018-10-09)

Emissions-free energy system saves heat from the summer sun for winter
A research group from Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, has made great, rapid strides towards the development of a specially designed molecule which can store solar energy for later use. These advances have been presented in four scientific articles this year, with the most recent being published in the highly ranked journal Energy & Environmental Science. (2018-10-03)

Tiny moth from Asia spreading fast on Siberian elms in eastern North America
Since 2010, a tiny moth originating from East Asia has been spreading over eastern North America. Its green larvae, or caterpillars, make narrow tunnels in the leaves of Siberian elms. Sometimes very abundant, they can be seen to descend en masse from the trees when they are done feeding. The moth species was described independently from Russia as Stigmella multispicata in 2014. (2018-09-17)

Study confirms truth behind 'Darwin's moth'
Scientists have revisited -- and confirmed -- one of the most famous textbook examples of evolution in action. (2018-08-17)

Model way to protect trees
New research unravels the dynamics of tree production, economics and variability in demand to show how to reduce the risks of importing such damaging forest pests and diseases as oak processionary moth and ash dieback. (2018-08-15)

Hollow trees host massive moth slumber parties
Moths are generally loners. So, when Florida Museum of Natural History lepidopterist Andrei Sourakov spotted a dozen glossy black Idia moths inside a hollow tree, he made a mental note. When their numbers jumped to more than 400, he was astounded. (2018-07-27)

Anti-Bat-Signal: Moths with larger hindwings and longer tails are best at deflecting bats
Each night, dramatic aerial battles are waged above our heads, complete with barrel rolls, razor-sharp turns, sonar jamming, cloaking devices and life-or-death consequences. (2018-07-04)

Newly discovered Xenomorph wasp has alien-like lifecycle
A University of Adelaide PhD student has discovered a new species of wasp, named Xenomorph because of its gruesome parasitic lifecycle that echoes the predatory behaviour of the Alien movie franchise monster. (2018-06-27)

Bogong moths first insect known to use magnetic sense in long-distance nocturnal migration
Researchers reporting in Current Biology on June 21 have found that nocturnal Bogong moths, like migratory birds, depend on the Earth's magnetic field to guide them on their way. The discovery offers the first reliable evidence that nocturnal insects can use the Earth's magnetic field to steer flight during migration, the researchers say. (2018-06-21)

Watch: Insects also migrate using the Earth's magnetic field
A major international study led by researchers from Lund University in Sweden has proven for the first time that certain nocturnally migrating insects can explore and navigate using the Earth's magnetic field. Until now, the ability to steer flight using an internal magnetic compass was only known in nocturnally migrating birds. (2018-06-21)

Mixed signals from poisonous moths
Poisonous moths use bright red spots to warn predators to avoid them -- but natural variation in these wing markings doesn't provide clear indications of how toxic individual moths might be -- new research shows. (2018-06-04)

Researchers mimic comet moth's silk fibers to make 'air-conditioned' fabric
In exploring the optical properties of the Madagascar comet moth's cocoon fibers, Columbia Engineering team discovers the fibers' exceptional capabilities to reflect sunlight and to transmit optical signals and images, and develops methods to spin artificial fibers mimicking the natural fibers' nanostructures and optical properties. (2018-05-17)

New method speeds up 3-D printing of millimeter-sized imaging lenses
The Northwestern Engineering research team used 3-D printing to make high-quality customized lenses quickly and at low-cost, which could be used for optical imaging, vision correction, and disease diagnosis. (2018-03-26)

It's not only size, but scales that matter in some male moth antennae
Male moths have evolved intricate scale arrangements on their antennae to enhance detection of female sex pheromones, which allows them to keep their antennae small enough to maximize flying, new research suggests. (2018-03-13)

Study tracks what moths think when they smell with their antennae
researchers have created a functional map of how the hawkmoth smells, tracing the process from the antennae to specific areas in the hawkmoth brain. Using a wind tunnel, calcium imaging, and 80 different odor compounds found in the hawkmoth's natural environment, researchers mapped how the hawkmoth distinguishes between odors to find a safe place to eat or to lay eggs, according to the study published Feb. 27 in the journal Cell Reports. (2018-02-27)

Scientists identify specialized brain areas for feeding and egg-laying in hawkmoths
The search for food is linked to other areas in the olfactory center of female tobacco hawkmoths (Manduca sexta) than the search for plants to best lay eggs, researchers from the Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology in Jena, Germany, found. The study confirmed that activity in specific areas in the antennal lobe of the insects correlates with feeding behavior, whereas activity in other areas is related to egg-laying. (2018-02-27)

Moths in mud can uncover prehistoric secrets
A groundbreaking new technique for examining moth scales in forest lake sediments allows prehistoric outbreaks of these insects to be identified. The technique -- which could prove as revolutionary as fossil pollen and charcoal markers -- can provide information on the frequency and intensity of past and future insect epidemics, their impact on the forest environment and how they are linked to climate change. (2018-02-22)

Comes naturally? Using stick insects, scientists explore natural selection, predictability
Predicting evolution remains difficult. Scientists from Utah State University, University of Sheffield, University of Connecticut, University of Notre Dame and Simon Frasier University studied evolution of cryptic body coloration and pattern in stick insects for insights. (2018-02-15)

First report in decades of a forgotten crop pathogen calls for critical close monitoring
Scientists, breeders, farmers and conservation groups must continue to work in close collaboration to prepare for the potential re-emergence of a forgotten crop pathogen, a new study advises today. (2018-02-08)

Double trouble: Invasive insect species overlooked as a result of a shared name
An invasive leaf-mining moth, feeding on cornelian cherry, has been gradually expanding into northern Europe under the cover of a taxonomic confusion for a period likely longer than 60 years. It has been sharing a name with another species. For the first time, a recent paper in the open access journal Nota Lepidopterologica properly distinguishes between the two insects and tries to reconstruct the invasion of the 'true' moth behind the name of Antispila treitschkiella. (2018-02-08)

Earliest fossil evidence of butterflies and moths
Researchers working in Germany have unearthed the earliest known fossil evidence of insects from the order Lepidoptera, which includes butterflies and moths. The fossils, mostly wing scales, provide important insights into lepidopterans' evolutionary history, which has been murky to date. To make their discoveries, T.J.B. van Eldijk and colleagues analyzed about 70 wing scales and scale fragments from a drilled core in northern Germany, which dates to the Triassic-Jurassic. (2018-01-10)

Night-flyers or day-trippers? Study sheds light on when moths, butterflies are active
Butterflies fly during the day while moths travel at night - or so you might think. In reality, their behavior is much more complicated. A new Florida Museum of Natural History study offers the first comprehensive overview of the surprisingly complex question of when butterflies and moths are active. (2017-12-12)

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