Cairns Botanic Gardens in Australia Hosts 65 for Moth Night

By Dave Rentz, Australia Country Coordinator

The annual Moth Night was held on an unusually warm and humid night on July 14. The event was
preceded by a Sausage Sizzle. Approximately 65 people attended, most of whom were
members of the Friends of the Botanic Gardens.

Light sheets were set in the rainforest near the entrance to the Red Arrow Trail. Another
was in a gully just below dominated by several huge Paperbarks, Melaleucua leucadendra.
A small generator provided the power source.

Just at dark the power was turned on and the moths and other insects started to arrive
shortly thereafter.

It is officially “winter” in Australia in July, but in the tropics as we are in
Cairns, it is a mild winter at best. This year it was even more mild than usual. This seemed to
help with the number of insects that came to the lights. However, in “summer” (December
and January) we would expect an even greater number of species.

There were few complaints about the paucity of insects and everyone seemed to find something of interest.

Phone cameras were in prominent use. In addition to the moths, visitors discovered other member of the rainforest community out and about after dark.

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