Marvellous Moths
Derbyshire Life|May 2017

Surely even mottephobics can’t fail to be converted by Paul Hobson’s fantastic photographs of our elegant and secretive flying friends.

Paul Hobson

DURING spring and summer one of my favourite routines is the daily opening of my moth trap. The schoolboy sense of anticipation is as strong as ever. Even after years of running the trap new species still come to light and they are often ones that I can’t identify straight away, which all adds to the fun. Moths are one of our largest groups of insects, yet at the same time they are probably one of the least known and understood.

Everyone can recognise butterflies, mainly because they fly during the day and are colourful. It is also rare to find anyone who has a fear of butterflies, but it isn’t at all unusual to come across folk with an irrational fear of moths. It’s not hard to see how this can develop. A dark, calm, balmy evening and suddenly your face is brushed by something that you can’t see, so your imagination runs riot. This is unfortunate because moths are incredibly beautiful, varied and essential to the wellbeing of all of our habitats. They also have some of the most fantastic names of any animal group – Merveille du Jour, Muslim Footman and Ruby Tiger for example.

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