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Why do you like lepidoptera?

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Old Saturday 1st August 2020, 20:05   #1
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Why do you like lepidoptera?

So I've noticed that there's loads of talk about "what species is this" and "this is what species I've seen", but we've spoken less of what motivates us to even ask those questions in the first place. To spend hours diving through wildlands or travel far to spy a tiny butterfly; to chase fluttering wings in the heat of the day or get up at the crack of dawn (or sometimes just never go to bed).



So I thought I'd start the ball rolling :)

For me I came to my interest through the camera, for me it is a part challenge in capturing the photos, but also in the detail, structure and beauty that the camera can unlock and show. Things that with the naked eye are hard to see or appreciate in a few fleeting moments; or which are impossible to see without magnification.

Being able to see not only the segments of the eye but the hairs that make up its structure; to see the scales on the wings; the hooks on the feet. To really pause and look at something close and in detail. There's also the fun in the hunt, in seeking out new moths or in the surprise of what you find in the trap in the morning or find out and about on a walk.

There's also satisfaction in learning to identify them and developing that whole skill of its own.

When I'm taking photos I enjoy the technical and artistic challenges that it presents; often more the former than the latter for me as of late since many of my photos tend to be "record/detail" shots based on what I get out of a moth trap - whilst artistic tends to come into itself when I find moths out and around - ergo when I'm not dictating the surface or area around them.


So that's a bit from me, what about you? What draws your interest the most, what's your lure and fascination?
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Old Wednesday 5th August 2020, 22:56   #2
Paul Chapman
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These are lovely! Thank you.

For me, I have always thought that part of the lure of birdwatching is because it is accessible nature. Obvious everywhere and with a variety that keeps interest. Children are attracted to invertebrates but traditionally, pre-Internet and accessible books, that interest used to hit a dead end leaving birds. After being distracted by birds almost exclusively for the best part of twenty years, save for dalliances with the limited number of butterfly and dragonfly species, I got really hooked on moths with the variety and accessibility again. During lockdown, the moth trap has been a massive boost having put that interest on the back burner a couple of times as a result of exhausting garden moths & a lack of time due to work.

All the best
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Old Thursday 6th August 2020, 20:22   #3
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Aesthetics, wildlife wonder, anticipation when I get up and realise I've a trap full of moths to investigate; personal achievement tempered with a sense of community - especially the way anybody can ask "what's this" on here - I come back all the time to "well, why wouldn't I like them?"

And thank heavens for the moth trap throughout lockdown!

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Old Wednesday 19th August 2020, 19:52   #4
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Shame you haven't had more replies OP. I think it's an excellent question. The first thought that always comes to my mind has, unfortunately, already been snapped up by John! ... "Why wouldn't you?" Seriously, it just seems so 'natural' and 'obvious' to me, at least with the vast majority of leps I see. I genuinely find it baffling and incomprehensible that someone would just pass these intricate little beauties off and say 'ach, it's just a moth' or when you point out a particularly striking butterfly to someone and they go 'oh yes, I see it. Cool.' and then just carry on talking about last night's TV or whatever. I sometimes think 'Hey, I've just done you a massive favour here; I've offered you a gateway experience, now Look At It. LOOK. AT. IT"
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Old Friday 21st August 2020, 08:11   #5
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Thanks all!

Britseye - I think everyone is out hunting and playing with moths and moth traps
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