NMW 2012

The first annual National Moth Week (NMW) was held worldwide 23-29, July, 2012. National Moth Week’s goals are to spotlight moths and their ecological importance and to collect and report meaningful data on moths across a wide geographic area largely through Citizen Science. The first National Moth Week proved to be exceptionally successful at achieving these goals.

Highlights from National Moth Week 2012:

·         307 registered locations in 49 states in the United States and in 29 other countries.

59 of the registered locations reported multiple events during the week, with half of all registered events being Public. (Linkto world mothing map)

·         Participation was extremely diverse ranging from individuals and families looking for moths in their own backyards or local parks to conservation organizations and state agencies holding well-advertised public events.

·         National Moth Week locations were in inner cities such as downtown Manhattan, to remote places in Costa Rica, Kenya, Gambia and elsewhere.

·         National Moth Week events were also very varied ranging from typical nocturnal moth nights with lights and bait; PowerPoint presentations on moths and their ecology; daytime walks to search for caterpillars and moths; talks about the impact of artificial lights on moths and daytime walks to search these lights for moths; moth parties replete with moth-themed foods and special access to moth collections at Cornell University. (link to event photos)

·         In order to facilitate data collection of moths, National Moth Week partnered with Discover Life, Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA), Project Noah, BugGuide, and Moth Photographers Group (MPG). These sites are all repositories for data and photographs about moths and other Organisms. The partner organizations received over 3,500 submissions. In North America – close to a thousand (972) moth photos were uploaded into Discover Life’s albums, Bug Guide received 927 submissions and 421 photos were added to the BAMONA website.  Spottings’ from around the world were added to Project Noah through its global “Moths of the World” mission. Reports of 684 ‘spottings’ came from 30 countries on all continents (except for Antarctica).

·         National Moth Week partnered with a number of major nature authors and provided participants the opportunity to win a signed copy of their books. Other nature books that were out of print or difficult to obtain were also offered by National Moth Week.

·         Discover Life offered a $100 prize for one participant who submitted to an album. Project Noah created a special National Moth Week digital patch for anyone contributing a moth observation during the week only. After National Moth Week all registered participants received a certificate for their participation.

·         The first National Moth Week received vast media attention including coverage on both the National Geographic and Scientific American websites and in many other newspaper and online outlets. National Moth Week also received a letter of support from United States Congressman Rush Holt. National Moth Week was also featured on the Encyclopedia of Life as a Podcast spotlighting three separate moth night events that week in New Jersey, Louisiana and Hawaii.

In order to create a readily accessible portal for National Moth Week events, and to promote connectivity of people and groups, a website was created. The website (www.nationalmothweek.org) provided searchable maps and links to all registered events allowing anyone interested to find a nearby event. The website also contains resources and how pages and a blog. In addition to the website a Facebook page  and Facebook caterpillars page,  Twitter, and Flicker group are used by National Moth Week participants to share photos,  mothing stories and information. 

Participating countries:  Australia, Bhutan, Bulgaria, Canada, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Croatia, Czech Republic,  France, Gambia, Germany, India, Indonesia, Israel, Italy, Jamaica, Kenya, Malaysia, Mexico, Nicaragua, Portugal, Russia, Slovakia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, United Kingdom, United States, Venezuela.

Publications:   David Moskowitz & Liti Haramaty, National Moth Week – a new global citizen science project focused on moths, Terrestrial Arthropod Reviews, 6 (2013) 185-200  Online edition  PDF

David Moskowitz & Liti Haramaty, The first National Moth Week (2012): A review and highlights, News of the Lepidopterists’ Society, 55(1) (2013), 18-28  PDF

Please note that due the large number of events the map contains two pages, (1 & 2).  If you view the world mothing map (“view larger map” link below) directly on Google maps, you will be directed to page 1. Scroll down and click ‘2’ or ‘next’ at the bottom of the page to view additional events.

View National Moth Week event locations on a larger map.


Do you have questions like:

How can I attract and view moths?
How do I set up a ‘moth night’ or a ‘moth party’?
How can I photograph moths?
How can I submit my observations?

Find the answers on the Finding Moths page!

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30 thoughts on “NMW 2012”

  1. looks like my Registration doesn’t updated yet i’m from Sri Lanka. admins please check that.

    1. We got your registration and it will show up on the map soon.
      thank you and happy mothing!

  2. Looking for an event to take my family to. Wexare in Olympia, WA. willing to go from here as far North as Seattle or as far South as Portland, OR. Any info in this area?

    1. Sandy – check out the map on this page. You can focus in on your area to find NMW events.

  3. Here is an update on our event!

    Celebrate National Moth Week

    Oxley Nature Center will be celebrating National Moth Week by hosting “Moth Mania” immediately following our August 1 Full Moon Walk. We will have viewing stations (white sheets hung and lit with black lights) available to attract moths and other nocturnal insects. Moth bait will also be painted on several trees along a trail for flashlight viewing. Come and see these mysterious, colorful creatures in their natural environment at night.

    The Full Sturgeon Moon Walk is Wednesday, August 1, from 7-8:30 pm. $2 for general public, free for members, all ages, you must register in advance. Moth Mania will take place from 8:30-11:30 pm.
    This is a fun family event!

  4. Both the counts in the northern Adirondacks are shown in the complete wrong locations! My Lake Placid count is on Friday, July 27 and is at 44 16″ 24.94″N and 73 56′ 52.21″W. The Paul Smith’s count submitted by Linda LaPan is at 44 26′ 54.46″N and 74 15″ 34.28″W.

  5. Greetings! Matthew York and I are the Marathon, TX location – but the pin shows up as being 2.5 hrs NE of us, in Midland, TX – we’d hate to give folks the wrong idea when we send them to the site! Many thanks!

  6. I also registered a few days ago. Another friend of mine registered before me and his dot hasn’t appeared on the map either. I think that they may have alot of people registering now that the date is approaching rapidly.

  7. Hi,

    I read that it takes a bit for the event to be process and entered on the map but its been a few days (I registered on Sunday) and just wanted to double check that my information was received. It should be a private event for milwaukee, wisconsin.

    Thank you!

  8. Hi,
    I registered and then could not find my event on the map, so I registered again! Then I finally found where it said that if I didn’t see my event on the map, you probably haven’t processed it. So, I don’t need two registrations. Please feel free to delete one of them.

    Is it possible to go back and edit a registration? I do not have a date set in stone yet. What if I decide on the date and want to go back and put it up there. Can I do that?

    1. Hi Stephanie, I’m sorry about the delay in posting your event on the map! The system we have now doesn’t automatically update the map when you register. We can go back and edit your event at any time-just leave a comment or send us an email through the ‘Contact Us’ page. Thanks for your registration!

    1. Yes, Of course you can participate in Moth Week!
      We would love to have Australia on the map and we are looking forward to your registration. (register here – http://nationalmothweek.org/register/)
      Even if you don’t have all the details yet, please register your location.
      And please tell us more about who you are….

  9. Hi there,
    This is a minor issue, but can you move my pin to Birmingham, AL? I’ve been sharing this site with people, and I want to make sure they know where we’ll be.

    1. Pete, no problem, Dan will move your market to the right spot. Thanks for sending us the update…

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