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Virgin Tiger Moth (Grammia virgo) at my moth light a few nights ago

PHASE ONE OF MY 2016 FIELD SEASON ends with a blast of color and texture from Maine, where I’ve been working and teaching since mid May.

Trough pitch pine and scrub oak not far from Portland I’ve chased rare, drab skippers in the genus Erynnis (the Duskywings). At the famed Eagle Hill Institute, Down East in Maine, I taught seminars on the study and enjoyment of birds, dragonflies and butterflies. But more than anything, I encountered the shocking diversity of moths, a mere fraction of which you’ll see here. During our moth and butterfly seminar at Eagle Hill, moths outnumbered the butterflies by at least 10 to 1.

For more about life outdoors at Eagle Hill, read last year’s tribute to this field station and education center. Otherwise, click on any image below to start the slide show. (As the instructor for courses on birds, dragonflies and butterflies, I didn’t find much time for photos. But the moths came to our UV lights each night.)

Onward to the next phase of the season with flying things here at home in Montpelier, Vermont, the best city anywhere, even as we cannot turn away from the shootings, bombings, sorrow and strife elsewhere on the planet, particularly these past few weeks while I’ve been away in the woods and wetlands. Pain and beauty — the inescapable diversity of life on earth.

  1. Kay Schlueter says:

    I saw a virgin tiger moth this morning, about a mile west up Cox Brook Road out of Northfield Falls. Unfortunately, it was deceased. 🙁 I recognized it from your posting. Even though no longer alive, it was in good shape. Very pretty.

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