|Photo: Shiraz Satarawala|
The moth members of this Order of insects include a large number of diverse families. Moth groups include micro moths, leaf miners, clothes moths, plume moths, ermine moths, burnets, geometrids, silk moths, sphinx moths, tiger moths, wasp moths, noctuids, underwings and many others.
The male moth is recognized by bushy, feathered antennae and angular forewings. Adult moths have primitive mouthparts and do not feed. The caterpillars are a striking dark brown color with yellow triangles along each side and metallic blue protrusions along the dorsal surface. They feed on vines until they are ready to spin their wild silk cocoons. Cultivating silk moths for fabric production has a long history starting in 2700 B.C. with the Chinese. They kept their secret until 300 AD, when their techniques spread to Korea and Japan. This moth used for silk production eats Mulberry leaves and is named Bombyx mori.