About the Fundraiser

All money raised from this event will go to funding our NC Under-reported County Mothing Project and for our moth-related education and community outreach events, such as our annual Moth Night and future moth crawls.

What is a Moth Crawl?

A moth crawl is like a pub crawl, without the alcohol. This is a family-friendly, all-ages, all are welcomed event. No previous moth experience required to participate.

There will be three moth light trapping locations in Hillsborough for you to visit in one night. The host at each location will have one or more moth collecting sheets set up to draw moths. Your hosts will help you identify moths on their collecting sheet(s), answer questions, and provide information about moths and the various other insects you will see.

During the event the Backyard Butterflies Pride Moth will make a surprise appearance at each moth crawl location to distribute treats and prizes!

Mothing is a weather dependent activity. Attendees will be provided updates by email about delayed start times or rescheduling in the event of rain.

How to Moth Your Way Across Hillsborough

Start at any of the three locations at 7:30 PM. At any location you can get your Official Backyard Butterflies Moth Crawl Stamp Card. Get it stamped at each location you visit. When you get all three stamps return to Backyard Butterflies before the event ends at 10:30 PM with your completed card to redeem a commemorative bumper sticker announcing you mothed your way across Hillsborough.

Meet Your Hosts

Backyard Butterflies

1507 US HWY 70A East

Lior Carlson of Backyard Butterflies has been mothing since 2019. Their interest in moths began in 2018 after seeing Underwing moths perched on their front porch during the day. Their favorite moths include the Pandorus Sphinx moth and the Snowberry Clearwing. Moths they would most like to see: Psychedelic Jones Moth and Black Witch moth.

Equipment at Location

Two collecting sheets
160 Watt mercury vapor
40 Watt UV light
LepiLED Maxi Switch light
Baited trees

TA Toennisson

728 Mary Cook Road

Aurora got into insect light trapping when she was getting her entomology degree. Her initial interest was in wasps and aquatic insects, not moths. She became interested in moths about five years ago. Her dream is to see a Psychadelic Jones Moth. Her favorite moths are: rosy maples, sphinx moths, and all saturniids.

Equipment at Location

One collecting sheet
Black light and CFL
Experimental LED light
Baited trees

Rich Teper

2833 Percussion Drive

Rich been collecting insects since 1966. The last 20 years his focus has been on moths and other nocturnal species. He finds it difficult to pick a favorite moth, but he does have a liking for Sphinx moths and Lithophane.

Equipment at Location

Multiple stations
UV light
Mercury vapor light
Bucket traps
Baited trees

Look for special yard signs along the route to guide you to each mothing location.

Click map for larger view

Mothing 101

What is Mothing?

It’s a fun hobby of drawing moths to a collecting sheet using a light source. Though moths are nocturnal they are drawn to light sources like porch lights, UV lights, mercury vapor lights, and retina searing 400 watt metal halid lights. 

What should I bring to moth night?

Please bring a flashlight or wear a head lamp. Bring with you whatever will make you comfortable such as an outdoor chair, non-alcoholic beverage, snacks. We suggest bringing a camera and field guide. 

What kind of moths will we see?

There are some fairly common moths we expect to see,  but let’s be honest: we’re all hoping that Mothra will appear! Ok, it’s always cool when some of the Big Ones grace us with their presence. 

Why bother to look for moths?

Moths are very important insects! Reasons to love moths: pollinators, indicator species, food for other critters. Yes, there are those moths that eat crops, carpets, wool sweaters, but a world without moths would not be a very pleasant world.

What will you provide?

In addition to our collecting sheets we provide UV protective eyewear, sunscreen, field guide, lighted magnifying glass, and hopefully interesting conversation. 

How is this citizen science?

All observations made on our collecting sheets are submitted as records to the Moths of North Carolina database website. You are welcome to submit your sightings to other citizen science websites like iNaturalist.

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(919) 241-7865
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