How to take part in Moth Night

Celebrate moths and record your sightings from 10 to 12 September. 

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Red underwing moth

This year’s celebration coincides with the annual autumn arrival of immigrant moths. Join other enthusiasts at a regional UK event to record the species you see. Butterfly Conservation’s Richard Fox explains how you can get involved. 

How to attract moths

Across the UK moth-traps and bedding plants will be deployed by thousands of people keen to see the amazing variety of moths that visit our shores or live year-round in our gardens and countryside. Most moths have a well-known attraction to light, but some with more colourful tastes, can be lured in for a closer look with ropes soaked in alcohol and the heady scent of the tobacco plant, Nicotiana

What to spot

Exotic species to look out for include the golden twin-spot and clifden nonpareil, borne in from hotter parts of Europe and even Africa on warm winds. Immigrant moths will come to moth-traps, but can also be attracted using wine ropes or ‘sugar’ bait, which provide a cheap, simple alternative. And, if you are not lucky enough to spot a rare migrant, spectacular local moths, such as red underwing, old lady and red sword-grass, are also fond of these baits.

Your sightings 

Whatever you find, please log all your Moth Night sightings via www.mothnight.info so your records can increase our knowledge, inform moth conservation and be shared with county recorders. Also, please keep your eyes peeled for moths marked with a dab of coloured paint. These are part of a Moth Night experiment to learn more about how far moths travel. 

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