National Moth Week celebrates the beauty, life cycles, and habitats of moths. “Moth-ers” of all ages and abilities are encouraged to learn about, observe, and document moths in their backyards, parks, and neighborhoods. National Moth Week is being held, worldwide, during the last full week of July. NMW offers everyone, everywhere a unique opportunity to become a Citizen Scientist and contribute scientific data about moths. Through partnerships with major online biological data depositories, NMW participants can help map moth distribution and provide needed information on other life history aspects around the globe.

Information and registration for 2016 – coming soon.nwm-2014-500px-gif-2016

Why moths?
  • Moths are among the most diverse and successful organisms on earth.
  • Scientists estimate there are 150,000 to more than 500,000 moth species.
  • Their colors and patterns are either dazzling or so cryptic that they define camouflage. Shapes and sizes span the gamut from as small as a pinhead to as large as an adult’s hand.
  • Most moths are nocturnal, and need to be sought at night to be seen – others fly like butterflies during the day.
  • Finding moths can be as simple as leaving a porch light on and checking it after dark. Serious moth aficionados use special lights and baits to attract them.

Ever been to a moth night?

 Sounds & sights from NMW 2012 

EOL.orgThis podcast and slide show is part of the One Species at a Time series from the Encyclopedia of Life ( Hosted by Ari Daniel Shapiro and produced by Atlantic Public Media. Licensed under a Creative Commons Attributions 3.0 United States License. Link to the podcast on and more information – here.


How you can help NMW:

How to participate? 

Register an event or join a public event.  Mothing can be done anywhere- at parks, nature centers, backyards and even in towns and cities. Learn more at the Finding Moths page. Information and registration for Moth Week 2015 – coming soon.

NMW Dates: 2015 – July 18-26 ; 2016 – July 23-31 ; 2017 – July 22-30

**National Moth Week is a project of the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission (Friends of EBEC), a 501c-3 nonprofit organization. All content and images on this website and materials produced for National Moth Week are the property of the Friends of EBEC and may not be reproduced without written permission from the organization, and are not for commercial use. © Friends of EBEC/National Moth Week.

Proverb Photo/Animation: Jim des Rivieres

National Moth Week logo design – Belen Mena

23 Responses to

  1. mothy says:

    Moths are so brill let all selerbrate moth week by lettin all the moth in to are house and fly in are face

  2. LW says:

    I have video of a newly hatched moth. How can I send it?

  3. richard says:

    Hi, I live on the coast in Mendocino, CA. I just caught inside my home a Sphinx and released it. I read online that the Sphinx moth is endangered.

    • Drew says:

      The term “sphinx moth” refers to the entire taxonomic family Sphingidae, which contains over 120 different species of moth in the United States. While there may be a species of sphinx moth that is endangered, chances are that your particular sphinx moth was one of the many non-endangered ones.

    • tamara wilkins says:

      I live in Inland Mendocino County and and took a picture of a Sphinx Moth, posted a pic on in the identification tab. Check it out. Does it look like yours?

  4. KImberly Warner-Blodgett says:

    I’m a master naturalist in Illinois. I’m going to send the Moth Week info to the ECIMN headquarters so we can make this an annual event for us too

  5. rob tanker says:

    We have noticed a decline in moths this summer. We live in Fairfield CT and we used to see them hovering around our outside lights…this summer th we are none at all. We have not observed any,even under the street lamps. Can you explain? We are worried. Thank you. RobTanner

    • Elena says:

      Rob – Thanks for your comment. One of the missions of NMW is to track any changes in moth populations, diversity and phenology worldwide. There have been some documented cases of moth decline in the US and the UK, but we’re still gathering data on them. That said, many insect populations tend to be boom-and-bust from year to year and many factors such as weather can contribute to these cycles. I’m not sure where you’re located but here in the northeast we had an especially harsh winter and late spring which may have contributed to reduced populations. We don’t have all the data in and analyzed from this years NMW so we’ll be sure to keep this page updated on that as well.

      • vivirocks says:

        Elena, he told you in beginning of letter he is from Fairfield, CT. I am from Mishawaka, IN – I have seen my actual caterpillar not from one of those bag caterpillars in years and extreme lots of different type of moths

  6. Michael Kurz says:

    Of course, I shall send you a photo of the pinned specimen as soon as possible !

  7. Michael Kurz says:

    On Saturday we found a new moth for the federal territory of Salzburg, the third record only for Austria: Noctua interjecta caliginosa, a (sub)species that is normally distrubuted in NW-part of central Europe only.

  8. Moth lovers, check out Moths_Kundasang_Sabah_Malaysia (near Mt. Kinabalu, North Borneo):

    I set this Google+ album to Public. Please let me know if you have problems viewing.

  9. I have a life-sized cercropia moth tattoo on my shoulder and a luna moth on my arm. I have always loved insects, but moths are one of my favorites!

  10. Antony Hargiss says:

    My pop was takin me out trappin and we had some traps for moths and butterflies. We got a silver-spotted skipper, a checkered skipper, and a small yellow skipperling. It was pretty cool, so it was nice to see that there is something like moth week.

  11. Darline says:

    about 5 yrs ago a soft gray moth with big blue spot on each wing landed in my partners hand it was a very large moth size of a big hand i didnt have a camera so wish I had a camera at the time we live in the yukon territory canada i all was wondered where it came from because we dont have any huge bugs here.

  12. Helen says:

    I have a Luna Moth cocoon. I’m waiting or her/him to emerge. I found her as a ( very large green ) caterpillar in an oak leaf çluster last fall in Yardley, PA.

  13. Nick Morgan says:

    I have been trapping moths for a Scottish survey. I hadn’t heard of Moth Week, but I will certainly put my trap out then.

  14. DougPete says:

    Your link to the flyer doesn’t work.

  15. Susan Clark Harris says:

    This week I saw a Cecropia Moth hanging around at a gas station. I got some good pictures! Probably not seen one of these since the 1970’s! Others who stopped to look had no idea what it was, or the difference between a moth and a butterfly.

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