A Moth with Really Quick Reflexes

We have had quite a number of lepidoptera out recently.  We have quite an outbreak of red admirals, but others are quite common as well.  A day flying moth, which I think is the celery looper, Anagrapha falcifera, is also present in large numbers.

Here is a photo I took of it:

The moth was setting down when I snapped the photo. 

I take a lot of photographs of insects.  Usually, assuming I don’t move too fast, the subject is not spooked by what I do.  Even when I use a flash, the bug just sits there.

Every time I tripped the shutter on one of these moths, the subject would be gone when the mirror snapped back into place.  I use a 1/25o second shutter speed, but there is probably about a 1/30 second lag from when the shutter is tripped and when the picture is taken.  So the moth was reacting within about 1/30 second to what I did.

The panic could have been caused by visual cues, although it happened with and without the flash.  I think it was reacting to the sound of the mirror snapping up, however.

No matter what I did, I always got a photo of a moth in motion.  In each case, the moth was not flying when I tripped the shutter.

So I think this moth can hear.

And it does have really quick reflexes.



About the roused bear

Nature photographer from central Iowa.
This entry was posted in Biological diversity, insects and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to A Moth with Really Quick Reflexes

  1. Pingback: Your Next Eyeglasses Could Be Designed After A Moth’s Eyes « Στα ίχνη της Γνώσης … Tracing Knowledge

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