Meet Max Frederick, 15, National Moth Week Volunteer

Max Frederick at a 2011 moth night at age 8.

Max Frederick at a 2011 moth night at age 8.

Max Frederick attended his first moth night in East Brunswick, N.J., when he was just 5 or 6 years old and barely waist-high to the adults who crowded around the lighted sheet with him. Now 15, he still remembers it.

“At the very first one, seeing all those moths on the white canvas with the light really fascinated me. Then once we saw this really big one and lot of cool things that showed up and I just thought to myself, wow, this is nature.”

Thanks to his mother, Leah, it would be the first of many moth nights for Max. “My mom heard about it and we just started going and we’ve been going ever since,” he said.

Max’s interest in moths has never waned. After the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission launched National Moth Week in 2012 as a worldwide citizen science project, Max continued to be a moth night regular. Now, he’s also a volunteer.

Max Frederick today at 15 with his pet blue-tongue skink.

Max Frederick today at 15 with his pet blue-tongue skink.

“I thought I would reach out to [NMW co-founder Liti Haramaty] and see if I could help at all,” he said. ”Right now, I’ve been looking across the web for moth night events that aren’t registered. I find their contact information and get in touch and see if they will register.”

As National Moth Week has become more widely known through various environmental  groups and websites around the world, events are springing up each year that aren’t registered on the NMW website, explained Liti.

“Max is being really helpful by searching the internet for NMW events that are being promoted by different groups, but haven’t registered with us.” Liti said. “When public events are registered, they are placed on our events map, which helps them increase attendance. It also helps us see the types of events and locations around the world. Groups also receive a beautiful certificate of participation designed by our artist Belen Mena.”

Max will be a junior this fall at East Brunswick High School, where he has been a member and officer of the SAVE Club, which stands for Students Against Violating the Environment.  He’s also been active with the Plastic Free EB campaign to reduce plastic bag use in the township. Looking to the future, he is trying to decide whether to go into veterinary medicine or marine biology, but entomology is “definitely a consideration” too.

He thinks National Moth Week is a great idea but not enough of his friends know about it. “I’ve been reaching out to them and inviting them to moth nights.” He hopes they’ll join him for the kickoff for National Moth Week this weekend in East Brunswick and around the world.

— Sandy Lanman


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Children’s Book Shows ‘Ordinary’ Moths Can Be ‘Extraordinary’

2018OrdinaryMothBookcoverA new children’s book by Connecticut author Karlin Gray echoes what avid moth-ers have always known: There are no “ordinary” moths; each one is special in its own way.

Told in rhyme, An Extraordinary Ordinary Moth is about “a dusty, grayish, dull insect” who feels he is “nothing special” when compared with more colorful and exotic lepidoptera like luna moths, hummingbird moths or the giant atlas moth, not to mention butterflies. 

But once a little boy shows his joy upon finding the ordinary moth flying around a light and convinces his sister how special it is with its camouflage and protective scales, the little moth finally feel special too.

Bulgarian artist Steliyana Doneva has illustrated the book with fanciful images, giving the moths anthropomorphic qualities, while staying true to their physical appearance. The “extraordinary ordinary moth” of the book is in the Geometridae family, which happens to be this year’s spotlighted moth family for National Moth Week.

Karlin says she was inspired to write the book when her son, then 3 or 4 years old, “declared the moth was his favorite insect. “ Her research led her to National Moth Week’s website, which she has included in the list of “extraordinary facts about moths” on the last two pages of the book.

The family now observes moths right from their porch. “Our front porch light seems to be a favorite hot spot for the neighborhood moths. Some even sneak into our house,” Karlin says.

She will be reading An Extraordinary Ordinary Moth to campers at her local nature center, Earthplace, in Westport, CT, on July 24.

Karlin also is the author of Nadia: The Girl Who Couldn’t Sit Still, about the Olympic gymnast Nadia Comaneci, and Serena: The Littlest Sister, about Serena Williams.

An Extraordinary Ordinary Moth is published by Sleeping Bear Press. It is available on and in bookstores around the country.

— Sandy Lanman

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Submit your National Moth Week observations to iNaturalist

iNaturalist is a place where you can record what you see in nature, meet other nature lovers, and learn about the natural world. For information on how to start (including how to submit observations), click here. Screen Shot 2018-07-10 at 3.03.04 PM

Any moths you submit to iNaturalist during National Moth Week will be automatically added to the National Moth Week 2018 project! Be sure to check if any regional partners have projects you can manually add your observations to. These partners are listed below with their project descriptions.

  • Hong Kong Moths – add moth observations from Hong Kong here to help document the moth species in Hong Kong, as well as their distribution and abundance within Hong Kong, with an aim to assess the conservation status of each species.
  • Moths of Spain – add moth observations to help the Spanish Association for the Protection of Butterflies and their Environment (ZERYNTHIA) collect information on the distribution of moths. This project also collaborates with European Moth Nights.
  • Vermont Atlas of Life – add moth observations to help discover, map, and monitor life across Vermont.


Click here to register your mothing and be part of National Moth Week 2018


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USA States participating in National Moth Week 2018 – July 2, 2018

Everyone is invited to participate in Moth Week!  Read more

On the map below – States in Green have registered events for Moth Week 2018. To see the updated world mothing map and find events in your area Click here.  Whether you state is already registered or not, you are invited to be part of this important global citizen science project by registering  your mothing click here.


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The World Mothing Map today – July 2, 2018

Everyone is invited to participate in Moth Week!  Read more

On the map below – Countries in Green have registered events for Moth Week 2018. To see a list of countries and find events in your area Click here.  Whether you county is already registered or not, you are invited to be part of this important global citizen science project by registering  your mothing click here.


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Celebrating NMW in Nepal – Guest blog by Sajan K.C.

Nepal 2018

Together We Can (NGO)  is celebrating the Global Citizen Science “National Moth Week, 2018” in Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park, Kathmandu (July 29). The event features a 3-4 hour hike from Sundarijal to Shivapuri Nagarjun National Park while spotting and documenting various species of moths (mostly day flying species) found inside the national park. The team will be guided by Sajan K.C. who will explain the participants their curiosities and queries on the moths, and various other insects of course. Certificates will be provided to the participants.

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NMW 2018 t-shirts and more – now available @ RedBubble

T-shirts, mugs, bags, travel mugs, notebooks, kids clothing and more – all with the National Moth Week logo and 2018 dates are now available for purchase on RedBubble

Your purchase helps support the project, and we thank you for it. 

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Moth Migration Project, guest post by Hilary Lorenz


moth migration project 1

Moth Migration ProjectAbout the Moth Migration Project
Moth Migration Project is an ongoing project begun in 2017. The first exhibition premiered August 2017 and was a part of the larger “Cross Pollination”, the exhibit at 516Arts, Albuquerque, NM.

Cross Pollination

The Moth Migration Project founded by Hilary Lorenz is a crowd-sourced collection of hand printed, drawn and cut paper moths exhibited in multi-sensory installation. Choosing moths, a nocturnal pollinator, as the vehicle for cross-pollination and international exchange, and using social media I invite people to create paper moths native to their geographic location. The moths become a symbol of the global network with currently over 15,000 submissions from 26 countries. The MMP created a spirit more significant than any single community by fostering authentic connections and engaging public participation through a synergy of shared experience and embracing mutual respect for personal uniqueness and creativity.

The Moth Migration Project spans all cultures, ages, countries. It is a tool for community building in both physical and digital worlds. Components of the MMP include free printmaking workshops for adults and children given by me, along with dozens of “moth ambassadors.” Moth ambassadors organize people to create moths specific to their region, then send the moths to join the carefully cataloged collection used for traveling exhibitions. I highly encourage educators to adopt the moth migration project to their classrooms as it is an excellent tool for STEAM learning as the inroads to both the sciences and art are tremendous.

The spirit of belonging is elevated when each moth making participant receives their own postcard certification of recognition acknowledging their outstanding contribution. The MMP website lists all the artist’s name and highlights their location on a world map further fostering inclusion. A Facebook page, which you are welcome to join, connects artists who may live in isolated or remote areas. It also allows for the sharing of individual’s moth making process. The moths from community workshops are collected into small portfolios and duplicates can be sent out to friends and families in nursing homes and healthcare facilities to bolster their wellbeing. In the first six months, 53 organizations, 675 individuals from 24 countries created over 15,000 moths demonstrated the deep passion and desire to connect in straightforward yet powerful ways. The paper moths became the symbol of sharing and community which will continue to grow and develop with workshops and exhibitions.

Adopting crowdsourcing as a form of artmaking dramatically changed my role and my practice. As an artist, I almost always work alone. Now, I feel like a conductor holding it together, encouraging each person to roll with their idea. I could not, nor do I want to control everything while building the Moth Migration Project. I let the project evolve, grow, and change. I have a vision, and I know that if I welcomed everyone in, it would be far more magnificent.



Would you like to join the Moth Migration Project and be included in exhibitions? You do not need to be an artist. Individuals and groups are encouraged to apply. Everyone from any part of the world is welcome. Please follow the details below.



Ending Soon-June 20, 2018! Heard Natural Science Museum Exhibition, McKinney, Texas Calling all moth makers in Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Arizona, Louisiana, and Mexico especially encouraged to make regional moths. Make and Exhibit your moths at the Heard Natural Science Museum. Exhibitions opens July 18 and runs through September 30, 2018. Please ship moths directly to: Lynne Hubner, Exhibit Curator, Heard Natural Science Museum, 1 Nature Place, McKinney, TX 75069

September 1, 2o18 – Sunbury Shores Arts and Nature Centre, St. Andrews by-the-Sea, New Brunswick, Canada, Seeks moth makers in New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, Canada, and Maine, USA especially encouraged to make regional moths.

March 1, 2019, Bundaberg Regional Galleries, Bundaberg Australia,  Calling all moth makers in Central Queensland, Australia,  especially encouraged to make regional moths.


  • Color: black, white or grey paper and or/ink (off-white, cream or light tan is fine) – No color
  • Size: No larger than 6″ (15.25cm)and no smaller than 1″ (2.5cm).
  • Paper weight can be variable, from about 30g/m to 270g/m.
  • Matte paper only please – No Glossy Paper – No “printer paper”
  • Species: Please consider researching and making your own regional moth.
  • Mediums: Cut paper, linocut, lithography, etching, laser cut, silkscreen, letterpress, drawing, watercolor, paint; Please no photograph no digital prints, no computer printouts, no origami
  • When in doubt keep image plain and simple
  • Please make at least 5 of the same moth for visual grouping, you may make as many moths as you like.
  • Please print name, city or town, state or province, country on the back of each moth.
  • Please click this link to fill out the Moth Migration Form:
  • Documentation: All artists locations will be documented at MothMigrationProject.Net. A text sheet and diagram with all participants will accompany the installation.
  • Important: Moth shape must be cut out of paper. Please do not send moth with any background image or paper. Just the outside contour as seen in the top image.
  • Please share your photos progress and completed moth photos on our FB group page, Moth Migration Project

Fine Print: Due to the volume of expected contributors I am unable to return the moths. The exhibition will be well documented and all photos will be available from my website. Your contribution will also be noted on my website. There are no fees and no exchange of money involved.

If you have any problems, please email me at

moth migration project 2

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Moth Night in Bedminster, NJ – September 22, 2017

09 2017 mothnight BedminsterNJ

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High Park, Toronto – Annual Moth Night Highlights for 2017. Gust post by Karen Yukich

Our event was held on July 26, which turned out to be a rainy evening. In spite of the less than promising conditions we were glad we went ahead anyway as those who did attend were quite keen and had a great time, especially the kids. The observations included a record high number of Gypsy Moths (15) and record low number of total species (45), of which 5 were new for this event.

This event is held each summer by the Toronto Entomologists’ Association in partnership with the High Park Nature Centre and High Park Nature. Cumulative results are posted here:

 Karen Yukich MothNite-2017-KY-290



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