David Moskowitz and Liti Haramaty, with The Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission , have been holding public Moth Nights in their local community several times every year since 2005 (www.friendsebec.com). Exploring the seldom seen nightlife, and celebrating biodiversity is the goal of these Moth Nights. The events typically attract 30 to 50 people, some with a scientific interest and others who simply want to experience a unique nighttime nature activity. In addition to widespread mainstream media attention, the Moth Nights have attracted many blog and website posts spotlighting the events, including some by children describing their experiences and amateur photographers showing off their moth shots. This publicity has made the events a spotlight on moths and biodiversity and has hopefully raised environmental awareness well beyond those who attend Moth Nights. Photographs of moths taken during moth nights have also been submitted to different organizations for their data collection programs. In 2011 The “Friends” Moth Nights received an award from the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions for an outstanding Local Environmental Project. The East Brunswick Mayor and Town Council also issued a Proclamation of Recognition. The East Brunswick Moth Nights were also featured in Wild New Jersey: Nature Adventures in the Garden State, written by David Wheeler and Published in 2011 by Rutgers University Press. In the fall of 2011, through their involvement with the Moth and Moth-Watching Facebook page, Liti and Dave decided to take Moth Nights to a new level – National Moth Week – a week long, global mothing event to promote the understanding and enjoyment of moths and to raise awareness about biodiversity. Please join us as we celebrate moths, biodiversity and the natural world around us.
David Moskowitz, Co-Founder is a Senior Vice President with EcolSciences, Inc. an environmental consulting firm in Rockaway, New Jersey. He has been with the company for the past 24 years and specializes in wetland and wildlife studies, remediation of contaminated sites and environmental regulatory compliance. Mr. Moskowitz has a Bachelors degree in Environmental Studies from George Washington University, a Masters degree in Environmental Policy Studies from the New Jersey Institute of Technology and a PhD in Entomology from Rutgers University. His doctoral thesis is on the rare tiger spiketail dragonfly using micro-transmitters. David is also a Professional Wetland Scientist and has served on the National Certification Board of the Society of Wetland Scientists, a United States Fish and Wildlife Service Bog Turtle Surveyor and a New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection Qualified Ornithologist. He has written more than two-dozen technical and popular articles on wildlife and wetlands and lectures widely around New Jersey on butterflies, rare species and vernal pools. Mr. Moskowitz is very active in local environmental efforts. He was the driving force behind the creation of the East Brunswick Butterfly Park, the first municipal park in the Country dedicated to the conservation, enjoyment and study of butterflies and the East Brunswick Vernal Pool Protection Plan that features spring road closures to allow amphibians to safely reach their breeding habitats. Along with Liti Haramaty he also was the stimulus behind the creation of the East Brunswick Community Garden. Mr. Moskowitz has served on the East Brunswick Environmental Commission for the past 15 years and also served on the Board of Trustees of the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions. Mr. Moskowitz lives in East Brunswick with his wife and three children and is happy to have stumbled upon a profession that allows him to frequently wander swamps and fields and woods looking for butterflies, dragonflies, birds, salamanders and all other kinds of similar creatures.
Liti Haramaty, Co-Founder is a founding member of the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission and a member of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission since 2002. Liti received a Master of Science degree in Ecology in 1987, for her work on morphology and ecological adaption in corals. She has worked at SUNY Stony Brook and Brookhaven National Lab. Since 1999 she has been employed at the Department of Marine and Coastal Sciences, Rutgers University. She has been involved in a variety of research projects such as drug discovery from natural products, programmed cell death in phytoplankton and corals, human effects on coral reefs, and more. At Rutgers she also initiated a program for children on “Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day”, during which children get to be “an oceanographer for a day”. Liti is a board member of the ‘East Brunswick Education Foundation‘, a trustee for The Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions (ANJEC). Liti was involved in helping expand the foreign language collection of her town’s public library and started two community related web sites. Liti likes traveling, hiking, kayaking, gardening and cooking. She also likes reading, sewing and pysanki. She wishes there were more than 24 hours in a day.
Elena Tartaglia earned her PhD in Ecology from Rutgers University and is currently an assistant professor at Bergen Community College. Her research focuses on moths of the family Sphingidae, which are large, pollinating moths commonly called hawkmoths. She has studied various aspects of nocturnal hawkmoth ecology and behavior such as their abundance and diversity in fragmented urban systems, their nectar diets, and their role as pollinators in the urban landscape of the NJ-NY metropolitan area. She also studies day-flying hawkmoths, commonly called clearwing moths. Since these moths are mimics of bumblebees, she has been comparing their nectar feeding behaviors to the bees that they mimic and the nocturnal moths to which they are related. Though she began her graduate career as a plant ecologist, she has since embraced entomology wholeheartedly. Elena has a bachelor’s degree in Biology from Drew University and has been involved in ecology and environmental education since graduating. She has worked as an environmental educator for NJ Audubon Society and as an educator, native plant propagator and meadow restorationist for Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve.
Sandra Lanman has worked as a writer and communicator since the 1970s. A New York City native, she began her career as a print journalist with The Home News in New Brunswick, where she won awards for opinion and creative writing, and for reporting on health and medical issues. Sandy moved into public relations in the late 1980s, working successively in the arts, public broadcasting and higher education. She helped Crossroads Theatre Company of New Brunswick achieve national and international visibility, served as director of communications for New Jersey Network, and handled high-profile projects for Rutgers University as director of media relations, including the visit of the Dalai Lama in 2005. She has won more than a dozen state and national awards for her writing, reporting, and public relations campaigns. In East Brunswick, Sandy led the successful community-wide effort to establish school-age childcare, was an original member of the East Brunswick Education Foundation, and produced and hosted EB People on EBTV. Sandy is president of Lanman Communications LLC and volunteers her services with the Friends of EBEC. She also is board secretary for Elijah’s Promise in New Brunswick. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Douglass College and master’s in communication and information studies from the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers. Sandy has hiked many national parks and loves photographing butterflies and moths. She is delighted to contribute to this important citizen science project.
Belen Mena is the founder of a design studio in Ecuador, devoted to branding systems, visual communication, corporate image, and editorial design. Mainly focused on coffee table books of photography and art since 1992. She is the author of “Pachanga”. The book aims to explore moths as a incomparable natural resource inspiration, employing it as the basis for a bi-dimensional analysis of the compositional, geometric and chromatic possibilities of this macro-world. It seeks to make the link between our urban lives and those of these near-invisible beings who come out at night for their ‘pachanga’, dressed to the nines, like ladies of the night heading to the street corner. This publication has received important international acknowledgements, such as the 2008 IF GoldAward (International Forum of Design), and was nominated by the Art Directors Club for the best 2007 book. It has published in Spanish, German and Japanese. http://issuu.com/belenmena/docs/pachanga
Jacob Gorneau is a graduate of Cornell University, with a B.S. in Entomology. He is very interested in the systematics and evolution of arthropods, and is interested in how we can use different techniques to better understand evolution. He became interested in moths in 2009 when he saw a Black witch (Ascalapha odorata) in Florida and a Polyphemus moth (Antheraea polyphemus) the same year at his home in New York. Jacob started regularly mothing in 2012. At Cornell, he worked in the Cornell University Insect Collection where he is conducting research on the micromoth genus Argyresthia and on a project to curate the macrolepidoptera in the collection. In addition, he worked in the Rayor lab on preparing spider specimens for the Spiders: Fear and Fascination exhibit which debuted in June 2018 at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Canada. In the classroom, Jacob enjoys being overwhelmed by the opportunities in entomology and teaching other students about these opportunities as a teaching assistant in Insect Biology and Alien Empire. In fall 2020, he will be attending San Francisco State University for a Master’s in Biology with a concentration in Ecology, Evolution, and Conservation.
Carl D. Barrentine, Spokane, Washington, USA. An old man now, recently retired from two college teaching careers (one in biology at California State University, Bakersfield and the other in Humanities at the University of North Dakota), Carl now spends sleepless summers finding and photographing elusive ‘hinterland’ moths from way-up-Minnesota and North Dakotaland. Pushed on by his enthusiastic mothing mentor and biological buddy, Jerry Fauske (Entomology, NDSU, Fargo, ND), Carl has very nearly survived five full seasons of serious mothing (2012-16).
Roger Kendrick, Roger is Founder of Asian Lepidoptera Conservation Symposium, co-founder, life member & founding chairman of Hong Kong Lepidopterists’ Society, life member of Butterfly Conservation in the UK, Hong Kong. Roger is a NMW Science Advisory Board member, Hong Kong coordinator and admin of the NMW iNatuarlist project.
Vijay is an IT professional by training and nature lover by heart. He has been a nature enthusiast from childhood interested in birds and invertebrates. His interest in butterflies and moths started with rearing of caterpillars collected from backyard garden. He continued his interest in biodiversity recordings and with development of Internet got involved with cyber-communities involved with biodiversity. He is co-founder of DiversityIndia (http://diversityindia.org) and has been co-ordinating the communities since 2001. He has also been associated with organizations such as WWF India, BNHS, RANWA, GBIF, NatureMates, Indian Foundation for Butterflies and MonarchWatch in different capacities. He has also been an active contributor of wikipedia, iNaturalist, Indian Biodiversity Portal, Bhutan Biodiversity Portal, Project Noah, and Encyclopedia of Life.
Known as Shubha, she is one of India’s most enthusiastic and knowledgeable experts on moths. She also is the newest member of National Moth Week’s Science Advisory Board. She is the author of the recently published Field Guide to Indian Moths, which took 10 years to research and write. She holds a Ph.D. in Zoology , has studied and worked with the Bombay Natural History Society (BNHS) and won a Hubert Humphrey Fellowship to study conservation education at Boston University in 2009.
Ken Childs is a longtime bug enthusiast, originally from Southern California, where he spent twenty-two years working in the tropical fish import/export business. He’s always been fascinated with arthropods. While working in California, he never had the luxury of spending time exploring the local fauna. That changed in 2005, when he moved to Tennessee to open an equine training and retirement facility with his wife, Joan. Photographing insects in his spare time became an obsession which eventually led to an interest in moths. It had the convenience of being a nighttime activity, so it didn’t interfere with taking care of the farm. Ken setup his first bug-lights in 2009, and in 2017 he constructed a covered pavilion for them, so rain and wind wouldn’t interfere with his hobby. His main focus is on photographing and documenting the different species that can be found on his farm, which is located close to Jackson, TN. His photos have been used in numerous publications worldwide.
Julian graduated from Rutgers SEBS and Rutgers Honors College in May 2022, majoring in Environmental Policy, Institutions, and Behavior with a minor in Environmental Geomatics. He completed a G.H. Cook Honors Thesis evaluating spotted lanternfly egg mass populations at Rutgers Gardens, with a heavy focus on spatial analysis and cartography to visualize the invasion-front data. Julian is currently working with Laboratory/Technical Researcher Liti Haramaty to map events for the 11th annual National Moth Week to be held through July 23-31, 2022. Julian seeks to continue a career path towards environmental management with a focus in geomatics to help visualize human interactions with the environment and work towards a more sustainable future.
Science Advisory Board
Former board members
Ian Morton lives in the Toledo District of southern Belize where he built and runs a small jungle guesthouse, and a large bug board. Being in the midst of an abundant source of nature and wildlife, his general love of nature soon expanded into a passion for bugs, butterflies, and moths. Ian is an avid supporter of citizen science, not only for its merits in terms of data collection but, perhaps more importantly, for its ability to create a new generation of nature lovers who, in turn, spread the word to their friends. He has participated in various citizen science projects over the years, including recording bat data and keeping records on howler monkey activity in the area, and held his first Belize National Moth Week event in 2013. With over 1,000 photographic records, his flickr page risked being overwhelmed with moths and, frustrated by the lack of a central data source for the small country (as well as his wife sagely noting that the flickr page was really intended to promote the business), he set about creating the moths-of-belize.com website. The website now has over 1,700 records of moths at the guesthouse, and he continues to add to the site on a regular basis.