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Moths of North America


Rather surprisingly, Moths make up the larger portion of lepidopterans found across the United States and Canada.

Moths, like their butterfly counterparts, are born from eggs laid near food sources and initially exist as caterpillars. They reach adulthood through the process of metamorphosis as do butterflies. One key distinguishing feature of moths when compared to butterflies is their vertical positioning of their wings (most species). Like butterflies, moths carry two pairs of wings known as forewing and hindwing and their antennae are almost threadlike (unlike a butterfly's thin antenna that is 'clubbed' at its tip). Another trait shared between them is the scale-like hairs that overlap their wings to produce the patterns and shapes we commonly associate with the creatures. A proboscis is used for feeding, a tongue-like protrusion that is rolled up when not in use and extended when feeding is needed. Most moths operate in night time hours, attracted to light sources, and are generally viewed as pests of the night sky. Knitters and others relying on fabrics and fibers abhor moths for their inherently destructive capabilities.

There are a total of (51) Moths of North America in the ButterflyIdentification.org database. Consider contributing an image at the email address showcased at the bottom of this page.

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