Thursday, 22 June 2017

Beware Ghost's about.

The last few weeks throughout June I've been turning up Ghost Moth under the group of Hepialidae, Swift Moths.
I'm sure many or you 'moth trappers' out there have seen one at one time or another.

Ghost moth (female) night time photograph 

I had a male the other day which did throw me a little when I first saw it, because it is not exactly a common encounter for me.
Plenty of the larger more decorative females around there seems, adorned in yellow and orange.
It then threw up a question in my mind.

Ghost Moth (male) 

Why was I seeing very little of the male of this species?
Is it less common than we are led to believe within the population, or is it trap shy, only attracted to certain types of light?
Or maybe I've been just unlucky.
Would be interested to know if many out there see the male often??



  1. Nick

    I do get more male than female Ghost at work under security lights than i get turn up at the traps at home. Mainly female with the odd male. Just 2 mile down the road. Security lights are a mix of Halogen & LED.

  2. That's a fascinating observation, Nick! I've had 2 or 3 Ghosts a night over the last couple of weeks, and all have been female. I've never thought about this before. It's quite possible that the females behave differently: maybe the males remain near lek sites whereas gravid females wander more widely to oviposit. Various Macro species appear at light mostly as males, eg Muslin Moth, perhaps because the females are more sendentary and the males wander to search for them. I'm sure somebody has written about this scientifically, if I can find the time to look...


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