We usually think of moths as drab brown fluttery things that incessantly bonk into light bulbs with annoying yet almost admirable persistence. But that's really not the case when you look farther than, well, the average light bulb. Moths are found around the world and they come in a spectacular range of sizes, shapes and colors — often giving butterflies a run for their money. Here are 20 of the most beautiful moths from around the world.
Comet moth: A species native to Madagascar and one of the world's largest silk moths.
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Lime hawk-moth: This camouflaged species is found in the Palearctic region and Near East, even into Eastern Canada.
Twin-spotted sphinx moth: This species can be found throughout North America, except (interestingly), no where in the southern half or western California.
Oleander hawk-moth: This species is also known as the Army green moth, for rather obvious reasons.
Io moth: With eye-like spots on its lower wings, this species can appear like an animal much larger than it really is, helping to ward off predators.
Garden tiger moth: The vivid pattern on this moth is also meant to ward of predators, giving warning that the moth is poisonous to eat.
Gallium sphinx moth: This huge moth has a wingspan that can reach an impressive 5.5 to 8 centimeters. It feeds on flowers at dusk.
Rosy maple moth: These colorful North American moths feed on maples, including red maple, silver maple and sugar maple — sometimes to the point of becoming pests.
Dysphania militaris moths: Easy to mistake for butterflies, this moth species is found in southeast Asia and is also called the false tiger moth.
Cecropia moths: This giant silk moth species is North America's largest native moth. Like other giant silk moth species, they are only meant to reproduce when they make it to the adult stage, so they lack a digestive system and live only about two weeks.
Noctuidae moth: This family of moths is also called owlet moths, of which there are an estimated 35,000 species. While most have drab wings meant for camouflage, some have brightly colored lower wings, such as this species.
Giant leopard moth: This flashy species is also called the eyed tiger moth. Its large wingspan of nearly 8 centimeters gives it plenty of room to flash the patterns on its wings.
Rothschildia aurota: This species prefers to keep things formal with no common English name. It is found in North and South America.
Emperor moth: This lovely species is found throughout the Palearctic region and in the British Isles. The males usually fly around during the day looking for females, which usually only fly at night. Odd, but the timing seems to work for the species.
White-lined sphinx moth: This large species found from Canada down through Central America can be spotted from April through October as it flits, hummingbird-like, from flower to flower as it feeds.
Luna moth: The wingspan of this species can reach over 11 centimeters, making it one of the largest species in North America. The huge wings make it all the easier to show off that beautiful light green coloration.
Giant atlas moth: Curious which is the largest moth in the world? It's this, the giant atlas moth. Its wingspan reaches over 25 centimeters (or 10 inches)! It is said to be named after Atlas of Greek mythology, but their Cantonese name translates to "snake's head mouth" after the snake-like profile in the coloration of the outer edges of their top wings.
Pellucid hawk-moth: This unusual species leaves the beautiful coloring to its body, while keeping its wings a minimalist accessory.
Elephant hawk-moth: This surprisingly bright species is found across parts of Europe and Asia from Ireland to Japan. Its coloring is what gives it its name, with the wings spread out like two large ears. Notice the pink spots on the body look like the outline of eyes at the top and lead down the body as if it were a long trunk.
Japanese silk moth: Endemic to Japan, this silk moth has made its way around the world as an import of the silk trade and can now be found in southeastern Europe and is spreading north. It has been part of the silk trade for more than 1,000 years.
And this list doesn't even begin to cover the range of beautiful and fascinating-looking moths out there. If you ever want to spend a few hours pleasantly shocked, look up moth species. They're spectacular!
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For me, travel is an important part of my self-care and fulfillment routine, but is it yours? You should know the answer to that question by the time you’re 40. (Photo: Anchiy/Shutterstock)
In a couple of months, I will turn 40 years old. When I was a kid, that was the age that seemed impossibly old. The age after which we weren't supposed to trust people, the age that was "grown up" — to my mind, at least.
Of course, now that I've almost reached that age, I realize that's not the case. So, what have I learned? My first golden rule is this:
1. Plan for the future you want, not the one other people tell you to have.
I wasted a lot of time when I was younger trying to fit into other people's ideas of my future instead of planning for the future I wanted.
Here's a practical example of how that plays out. The typical advice is that you should start saving for retirement in your early 20s, or by your 30s at the very latest. I did that, diligently saving up, starting with my first job because I was told to.
Now, that can be great advice and it's smart to follow it — but only if you see yourself wanting a straightforward retirement. Do you want to work hard, full-time for 40ish years and then quit altogether? If so, save away (and start ASAP).
But I made a different choice, for two reasons:
1. All the jobs that would have allowed me to save for retirement and retire at 65 meant I would have had to sacrifice the life I wanted to lead.
2. I don't ever really want to not work. I want to keep writing, editing, teaching and doing small, interesting jobs on the side until I die. Taking jobs that I don't want so that I can retire and do what I "really" want doesn't make sense for me/ I'm already doing what I really want to do.
So, plan for your financial future — but take into account that your future may not look like your friends' or your parents' older years. This applies to things other than finances, too. Do you want children? Do you want to get married and have a big wedding and honeymoon? If not, your 30s and 40s will look different than the traditional path. If you do want those things, start preparing for both of those eventualities now; babysit for friends' and neighbors' kids so you can learn about how to care for kids; prioritize finding a mate so you can have time to prepare as a couple for kids.
Personally, I chose to neither marry nor have children because I have other priorities. Remember, there's more than one way to live an adult life. Choose what's best for you, and prepare for it.
2. Take care of your body
Learning how to cook healthy meals isn't just about a healthier you; it's another way to spend time with friends. (Photo: Monkey Business Images/Shutterstock)
Regardless of any other life choices, you want to be as healthy as you can be now and into your future. By your 30s, you should have put smoking cigarettes behind you, and have figured out a workout plan that you can stick to. You should be able to cook or prepare meals for yourself that are healthy and satisfying. Your health care should work for you and involve some preventative care — you're too old to be seeing a health professional only when you get ill or hurt yourself.
3. Know what brings you joy
What do you love to do? What makes you happy is a key facet of adult life — not so you can indulge in it all the time, but so you have a toolbox that you can reach into when you need to. Look past the superficial answers here (cocktails, a great TV show) and dig in. What brings you deep-down joy? If you haven't discovered this by the time you're halfway through your life, you are missing out. Which leads me to:
4. Know how to pull yourself out of a rut
Awful things will happen in your life. It's true for everyone, and I'm sorry to tell you that. A rip-your-heart-out breakup, the loss of a family member, a dismissal from a job, a car crash, or even a series of low-level frustrations will bring you down at some point. What can you do to pull yourself out of that negative place? What are the things you can do to care for yourself? Who can you lean on in hard times? This is a life skill that few of us want to think about but one that's invaluable when you need it. By the time you turn 40, you should have some ideas about how to recover from setbacks and grief.
5. Be able to say 'no'
Being an adult means that sometimes you need to put yourself and your work ahead of other people's needs. The best way to know when and how to say no is to practice it. (And yes, it does get easier over time.
Original article and pictures take http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/stories/20-moth-species-more-beautiful-than-butterflies site