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Luna moth (Actias luna) at Radnor Lake

June 9th, 2011 · No Comments · insects

luna moth on a tree at Radnor Lake, Nashville

As soon as Mike E. and I crossed the wooden bridge on our approach to the steep climb up Ganier Ridge at Nashville’s Radnor Lake, Mike stopped, whipped out his camera, and started taking pictures of a tree trunk. Huh?

Upon closer inspection, I saw that Mike was photographing a large, uniquely shaped green moth that was just above eye level on the tree trunk. I would have walked right by without noticing this huge green-winged insect.

This is the easiest insect identification I have ever performed online: as soon as I searched Google Images for the terms big green moth Tennessee, almost every resulting image contained a Luna moth! The Luna moth – Actias luna – is such a uniquely shaped insect, there’s really no mistaking it once you’ve seen a specimen.

luna moth on a tree at Radnor Lake, Nashville

The digital photographs I took of this Luna moth did not turn out very sharp; because my camera – despite being a fine example of a basic digital camera – was not designed for close-up, macro images. I am sure Mike’s photos turned out much better; I’ll see if he will send some for this post.

Best resources for the Luna moth, Actias luna

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