Barcode Long Island Team Moth Maniacs
Barcode Long Island
Research Topic:
Biodiversity & trade
Taxonomic Group Studied:
Animals: Invertebrate


The Effect of Type of Light on the Attraction of Nocturnal Moths
Tiarnan Smith, Tristan Tran
West Islip High School, Suffolk
Mary Kroll


Moths play an important role in the ecosystem. They help pollinate plants and many animals rely on them for food, or as a means of pollinating their food, including humans (“Butterfly Conservation”, 2009). They are also an indicator species and can give us clues to changes in the environment. However, the increased use of artificial lighting can cause a decrease in moth biodiversity. The use of artificial lights can distract moths from their natural mating and feeding habits. By barcoding moths we can accurately identify the attraction of certain species to light wattage. Many moths look extremely similar and would be very difficult to identify as distinct species using traditional taxonomy methods (Janzen, 2005). The goal of this experiment is to find out which types of lights attract the least amount of moths and moth species in order to protect moth biodiversity.


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