The Kid Should See This

The Cecropia moth + 9 incredible species in slow-motion

Watch more with these video collections:

In this video study of moths, entomologist Dr. Adrian Smith captures the beauty and flight behaviors of these often overlooked insects. Highlights include the Cecropia moth, with its striking orange and white stripes, and the Peppered moth, a species famous for its camouflage advantages and disadvantages during England’s Industrial Revolution.

Take a closer look at the distinctive wing shapes and visual patterns of nine moth species and a caddisfly, documented in slow motion flight.

The video includes the Plume moth, the Red-bordered Emerald, the One-spotted Variant, the Ailanthus Webworm Moth, the Black-dotted Spragueia Moth, the Hebrew (below), the White Miller Caddisfly (not a moth), and the Arched Hooktip.

Hebrew moth
Plus, more about the Peppered moth (below), whose story, according to the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, “is oft-told in ecological lore; it’s the poster child for Evolution/ Natural Selection.” Smith explains:

“This species is found across the Northern Hemisphere from Asia to North America and studies of it in England have made it a classic example of natural selection in action. And that’s because all peppered moths don’t look like this one. They can be variable in color from a white and black spotted form that blends in with patterns and colors of lichen on tree bark, to a melanic form that’s uniformly dark all over.

“During the day these moths are resting on the trunks and branches of trees, and their survival partially depends on how well they’re camouflaged from birds that would eat them. During the Industrial Revolution in England, acid rain killed the lichen and soot darkened the trunks of the trees. Correspondingly, the dark version of the moth was more camouflaged and dramatically increased in abundance.”

peppered moth

“But, in more recent times, the lighter-colored moth, similar to this one, returned to being the more abundant type after pollution was better regulated and the resting places lightened up. The dramatic changes in the abundances of this moth’s different color morphs made it an early and observable example of natural selection in action.”

Smith shares video work from his Evolutionary Biology & Behavior research lab at the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences.

Dr Adrian Smith
Watch more of his excellent Ant Lab videos on YouTube or on TKSST, including:
β€’Β Seven spectacular moths filmed taking off at 6,000 fps
β€’ Moths and Beetles: 12 species in slow-motion flight
β€’ β€œFilming this changed how I see wasps!”
β€’Β Six tropical butterflies take off in slow-motion

Plus: More moth videos.

🌈 Watch these videos next...

Why does the Mexican jumping bean jump?

Rion Nakaya

Why are moths obsessed with lamps?

Rion Nakaya

Weevils, katydids, an assassin bug, & other insects fly in slow-mo

Rion Nakaya

Uropyia meticulodina: Amazing camouflage of a leaf-like moth

Rion Nakaya

The Unseen Incredibleness of Mealworms

Rion Nakaya

Sting, prey, raft: The successful behaviors of red imported fire ants

Rion Nakaya

Six tropical butterflies take off in slow-motion

Rion Nakaya

Seven spectacular moths filmed taking off at 6,000 fps

Rion Nakaya

Nature’s Masters Of Disguise

Rion Nakaya

Thank you to this week's sponsor: