Friday, January 23, 2009


We have some very interesting guests at the moment, entomologists from the CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation) which is a Government body based in Canberra, who are spending five days here doing field research on moths.

Over time I've taken these photos of various interesting-looking moths and now at last I can name them! One of the scientists, Dr Ted Edwards, is the co-author (with Dr Paul Zborowski who is also here) of "A Guide to Australian Moths" and kindly identified them for me. Ted has loaned us a copy while he's here and we'll certainly buy one for our wildlife library. Full of fascinating information (we never knew how interesting moths were!) very easy to read and a great help with identification.

Dr Marianne Horak is also here and, alongside Ted, is working to classify and 'sequence' moths for their DNA.

We certainly didn't realise that Australia has over 22,000 species of moths but only about 400 of butterflies - North America on the other hand has only about 12,000 species of moths but over 700 of butterflies!

These are two species of Hawk Moth - the top one is Ambulyx dohertyi and the one below is a species of the genus Theretra. The bottom one is Bracca rotundata.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Interesting site. I am looking to identify a moth that flew into my kitchen a couple of nights ago. So far I have found nothing. I'm in Cairns.