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Bios

Moths of Pennsylvania

This is us, Ben and Adam...

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           BEN

I'm Ben, and I'm 18 years old.  In addition to mothing I like to play soccer, and expect to play varsity in college next year, where I plan on majoring in Christian Theology. I am also intensly interested in music.

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ADAM
Hi, I'm Adam. I'm 18 years old. After graduating high school this coming June, I plan to study broadcast journalism in college and eventually become a sportscaster.
In addition to mothing, I am an avid fan of a variety of sports, and I enjoy working on and showing classic cars.
 

How We Moth 
 
The process starts in morning, when we pepare "moth bait." Moths like to sip it during the night. The recipe is as follows
 
1 cup of brown sugar
1 cup of sryup
5 oz of beer (preferable stale)
1/3 cup of honey
rotten fruit if you have it
Let it ferment until evening, then we spead it on a couple trees; It is best if the trees are along trails. After that is done, we turn on our lights, a 175 watt mercury vapor light, a bug zapper with the zapper grid disabled (see our home page for directions), and a few halogen lights. the mecury vapor is most effective and can be bought at your local hardware store.  Behind each light, we hang a sheet, the sheet acts as a landing pad for the moths.  
 
When that is done, we go inside until 10 o'clock, and then we begin to moth! We take our nets outside to the lights,  and catch any moths we want to identify or photograph then we  bring them to our "moth habitats" (we use portable mesh laundry hampers that were bought at IKEA, but they can probably be found elsewhere as well). We then bring out our ID books, figure it out, and take pictures the next day. After that we release the moths, and do it all over again. It is important that you don't run the light every night, or you could mess up the moths whole life. They weren't meant to spend their whole lives sitting on a big sheet. Many will just linger in the area if you run the light every night.

How We Got Started

It all began back in 1998 when my grandmother caught a Luna Moth on her back porch (she lives right next door to me), and brought it over to show me. I was taken by its appearance, having never learned anything about butterflies or moths before. I took the lid off  the jar my grandma had put it in and it flew away. From that moment, the Luna has been my favorite Lepidoptera, and I was hooked on butterflies and moths. I took this old fishing net we had and set out in search of butterflies. Soon, my mom bought me a nicer net and a small book on butterflies and moths, and as I learned more Ben got into it as well. Before long, we were seriously pursuing the leps with nice nets and good books, and that's how we got to where we are.
        -Adam Schroeder