Did you know that moths existed long before butterflies? Scientists have found fossils as old as 190 million years old! It and much more you can read the following article. So, if you are keen on learning more about insects in general, and moths in particular, read on and discover a whole new world!
Moths Are Related To Butterflies
The reason why moths resemble butterflies is that they are related to butterflies. In fact, butterflies, as well as moths belong to the same order of insects called Lepidoptera. What you also may not is that the majority of the said order is consistent precisely by moths, and many on the species still need to be discovered. In addition to that, unlike butterflies, the majority of moths are nocturnal insects, which means they are active at night.
How Do Moths Differ From Butterflies?
It is not difficult to distinguish a butterfly from a moth, even though they may seem similar. First of all, Butterflies have thin antennae, and the each finishes with a small ball or a club. There are also groups which can be distinguished mainly by using this principle within the order of butterflies.
Life As A Caterpillar
Even though moths evolved a long time before butterflies, they still share the particularities of their life cycle. For a moth to become an adult, they first have to go through a development phase in their life cycle as a caterpillar. Caterpillars make it cocoons from which they emerge as an adult insect. As for moths, some caterpillars will also take hold in the ground before they are transformed into adults.
Are Moths Important?
Unfortunately, people usually consider caterpillars to be agricultural pests. It is not far from the truth, as there are some very invasive species which can cause extensive damage to fruit in particular. They are also known to destroy fabric and feed on it when they are in their larva stage. Less commonly, they will eat mixed materials containing artificial fibers, and the stick to wool and silk.
The Fascination With Light
Is this still not known why moths are attracted to artificial lights. However, it is believed that it is because moths use the celestial navigation and make the most of the moon to navigate their way through the world and fly in a straight line. Since the moon is far away, it always remains in the upper field of the moth’s visual line, and by maintaining a constant angular relationship to the light source, the moth can fly in a straight line. It also explains why moths come plummeting downward in respect to the artificial light, and they are instinctively trying to keep the angle toward the light, but as they get closer to the light source, it results in a spiral path.