What Are They Thinking?

We’ve had cold nights, cool days, ice on the windshield and the deck, several small snowfalls and now this: a large hatch of moths.

What the heck is going on? This ain’t the right season to be flying around.

Or is it?

The moths gather by the dozen at night on our uncurtained windows. During the day they flutter and flop around the yard, along the gravel road and in the sunbeams in the woods. Getting clear photos of them has been a challenge as they never really stop for more than a moment. They’re in a hurry.

Bruce spanworm moth

Turns out they’re doing exactly what they should be doing at this time of year. They’re Bruce spanworms and they’re “late season” moths. No kidding. Seems the drop in temperature is what kicks off the mating season.

Another quirky characteristic — all the ones with wings are males. Females are wingless. This frenzy has been going on for a couple of weeks. There’s no time to eat, only to mate and lay eggs that will hatch next spring.

Get busy guys.

Bruce spanworm moth

Bruce spanworm   Operophtera bruceata  

11 thoughts on “What Are They Thinking?

    1. Well isn’t that amazing. 🙂 Same species or a different one? Ours live either side of the Canada-US border, pretty much coast to coast. Last night we had about 6 dozen of them on the kitchen window — a spectacular sight. It was warm here (about 6-10 C) last night, odd for this time of year.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Ma Nature never ceases to surprise. 🙂 . Depending on how close you live to the 49th, you may have them in your area — they tend to live along the Canada/US border, from coast to coast.


  1. Watching the patterns of nature is fascinating. For two days, the monarchs have been streaming through — giving me something delightful to watch as I work. Don’t I have the best office? But you have us beat for cold. It may reach into the 40s this coming weekend — Houstonians are trying to remember where they put their sweaters.


    1. Monarchs! Oh so lucky you. I’ve never seen them in the wild. (Will pics be coming soon to your blog?) Sweaters … hmm. Guess toques/balaclavas/mitts/gloves/scarves/boots/down jackets/ice scrapers/plugins for your vehicles et cetera aren’t on your shopping list. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      1. No pics, since I was at work and without a camera — or time to follow them around. Maybe this weekend, if they’re still around. We’ve got another strong front coming, and they may blow on out of here — metaphorically and otherwise.

        Liked by 1 person

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