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Digital Guide to Moth Identification

Recent Developments and Website Update by Bob Patterson

New Books on Moths

Eastern Owlet Caterpillars
ordering info on Books Page

Cascadia Butterflies
ordering info on Books Page

New Moth Field Guide
ordering info to come
Available in April

Sparganothini Fascicle
ordering info on Books Page
Available in April

Since this page was the last updated an entire year has flown by and much has taken place. Perhaps the most significant new development is the addition of distribution maps, for both moths and butterflies, at the top of all species pages. Information about the mapping project can be found on this page About MPG Maps. The last paragraph in that story tells how you can volunteer to help make the maps even better. Please think about volunteering.

10670 - Feltia jaculifera       About Moth Maps

Worms, Caterpillars, Larvae. In July, while visiting the Canadian National Collection in Ottawa, Don Lafontaine opened a special cabinet to show me a treasure trove of 35mm Kodachrome slides of larvae. Many of the photographs had been taken 20-40 years ago. More than a thousand of them have now been scanned to disk and appear on MPG pages. Further along the larva trail two smaller slide collections were discovered at the McGuire Center for Lepidoptera and Biodiversity in Gainesville, Florida. These also have been scanned to disk.

Thanks to the massive influx of new larva photographs and especially to the efforts of new Associate Editors for Larvae Jane and John Balaban, the Larva Library has grown to 1,150 species. When the Balabans have completed their survey of photographs at BugGuide and elsewhere, we will begin work on a search program to make it much easier to identify (or get close to identifying) photographs of caterpillars. In the meantime, beginning next month, Mike Boone will revise and improve our display of larvae while also making it easier to maintain that portion of the MPG database.

Polillas y Mariposas de Peru. Jim Vargo spent a few weeks in Peru with Charlie Covell, and Jim managed to capture quite a few butterflies and moths. You can take the trip vicariously through Jim's Photographs.

No Passport? Visit Puerto Rico. Closer to home for Norte Americanos, the island of Puerto Rico offers balmy weather (outside the hurricane season) and beautiful neotropical moths and butterflies. Many of the lepidoptera are also found in the southern USA. The coffee is wonderful, too. An important consideration for this mothophile. You can visit Aaron Cavosie's Moths of Puerto Rico to see what awaits you there.

Have You Taken the Moth Walk?. A number of visitors have reported that they found it helpful to Try Walking Through the Moth Families. Scrolling back and forth through the pages might help you to gain familiarity with the many moth shapes and patterns, the first step in becoming comfortable when trying to identify moths.

National Moth Week.  This is a new event for North America and "National" could have been "Continental." Events are planned in both Canada and the United States during the period 23-29 July, 2012. These dates happen to coincide with those of the annual meeting of the Lepidopterists' Society to be held this year in Denver, Colorado. Vist National Moth to learn more, join an event, or organize one in your area.

Got the Mothing Bug?  Add your photographs to the collaborative effort here at Moth Photographers Group and help build the photobase that helps everyone interested in moth identification. Please consider posting your moth photos at BugGuide where several people help to identify them. With your permission it is an easy matter to select photos there that are needed for MPG plates and species pages.

Are You a Moth Specialist? Add an entry in your CV by refereeing a family or subfamily here, and help build the accuracy of the photo library.

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

Send suggestions for additions to the Book List to Webmaster -- Moth Photographers Group

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