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Digital Guide to Moth Identification

Jerry Powell's Western Micromoths
From the Essig Museum of Entomology
All Moth Photographs 2010 by Jerry Powell. Museum graphics used with permission.


The Essig Museum of Entomology is one of the member museums of the University of California's complex of Berkeley Natural History Museums. It holds more than five million specimens, mostly from California, of which about 25% represent lepidoptera. Jerry Powell has been intimately connected with the museum for 50 years, becoming Director Emeritus in 1999. He continues to teach as a professor in the graduate school at Berkeley and to conduct and publish research in the lepidoptera. Jerry's contributions to the literature and to databases are far too numerous to list here. A brief overview is provided on the Essig Museum website where much additional information about the museum may be found.

In 2009 Jerry, together with his career lifetime colleague Paul Opler, produced a magnificent volume treating of the Moths of Western North America. The photo collection presented below derives from Jerry's contributions to the plates of that book, although these actually represent a different set of photographs of the same specimens. My review of that book, and ordering information, may be found here.

Jerry has conducted a rearing program that is the most extensive in the history of the study of New World microlepidoptera. During the past 35 years he and his students have processed more than 13,000 collections of larval or live adult lepidoptera. Resulting data encompass more than 1,000 species of moths, through rearing either field-collected larvae or from those emerging from eggs deposited by females in confinement. This total includes more than 60% of the estimated 1,500 species of microlepidoptera found in California. It is safe to say that today, due to the efforts of Jerry and his students, we know more about the host plants and biology of the microlepidoptera of California than of any comparable area of the continent. Much of the distributional data found in the California Moths Database is likewise due to Jerry's leadership. We will soon have a MONA fascicle covering the Sparganothine Tortricidae co-authored by Jerry Powell and John Brown. ~ Bob Patterson


The Collection
 
  • Plate 01.0
     


  • 0001  -  0854  :  Early Micromoths
  •  
  • Plate 02.0
     

  • 0855  -  1680  :  Oecophoridae-Scythrididae
  •  
  • Plate 03.0
     

  • 1681  -  2311  :  Gelechiidae
  •  
  • Plate 04.0
     

  • 2312  -  2512  :  Copromorphidae-Heliodinidae
  •  
  • Plate 05.0
     

  • 2513  -  2626  :  Sesiidae
  •  
  • Plate 06.0
     

  • 2627  -  2700  :  Choreutidae-Cossidae
  •  
  • Plate 07.0
     

  • 2701  -  3500  :  Tortricidae: Olethreutinae
  •  
  • Plate 08.0
     

  • 3501  -  3863  :  Tortricidae: Tortricinae
  •  
  • Plate 09.0
     

  • 4703  -  5509  :  Crambidae
  •  
  • Plate 10.0
     

  • 5510  -  6088  :  Pyralidae-Thyrididae
  •  
  • Plate 11.0
     


  • 6089  -  6234  :  Pterophoridae



  • Moth Photographers Group  at the  Mississippi Entomological Museum  at the  Mississippi State University

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    EssigIndex.shtml -- 11/05/2010