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Author Topic: What is the dusty material that comes off a moth's wings?  (Read 8770 times)

paul.fr

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well its fast approaching moth season, god i hate moths. two quick questions:

firstly, what is that dusty stuff that comes off moths wings and what is it for, secondly..or thirdly why do moths always attack bald heads! i hate it, always having to duck for cover  [:(!]
« Last Edit: 08/09/2016 15:28:42 by chris »


 

Offline Seany

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Moths and dust
« Reply #1 on: 17/04/2007 15:15:19 »
LOL. I'm not sure what comes off the moth, but I know that it isn't good when we touch it and rub our eyes. Although I don't know what effect this has on us either.

And I never knew about that bald heads, ;)
 

another_someone

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Moths and dust
« Reply #2 on: 17/04/2007 15:55:54 »
The 'dust' that comes off moths are soft scales. 

I can imagine that these scales might have aerodynamic implications for the moths wings; and it is also possible that it might provide some sound proofing, hence maybe making them less easily detectable by bats, and other predators; but the main advantage I know of them is to escape spiders' webs (the scales stick to the spiders webs, but the moth flies off).

Don't know particularly about bald heads, but the main reason moths are attracted to skin is that they like the salt in sweat - if your head sweats a lot, then they will love all that salt you are excreting.  In understand that the male spiders will even take some of that salt as a courtship gift to attract a female.
 

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Moths and dust
« Reply #3 on: 17/04/2007 16:03:19 »
Great George, thanks for that information. I never knew that. ;)
 

Offline neilep

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Moths and dust
« Reply #4 on: 18/04/2007 00:03:06 »
well its fast approaching moth season, god i hate moths. two wuick questions:

firstly, what is that dusty stuff that comes off moths wings and what is it for, secondly..or thirdly why do moths always attack bald heads! i hate it, always having to duck for cover  [:(!]


Regarding the attraction to bald heads !

this might be quite a desperate attempt to answer this but it may have a soup-con of validity........However,........in addition to Georges explanation............

Could it be a visual cue ?...a bald head such as yours from a Caucasian is gonna be light !!....and it will be light and  also reflective of light  !!.......

The more I think about it the more I think there may be some credence to this.
 

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Moths and dust
« Reply #5 on: 18/04/2007 00:07:36 »
Hi Neil again. ;) Yes, I think that theory of yours may be true. Also, aren't bald heads alot more warmer than normal hair? And moths like warmth..
 

Offline Monox D. I-Fly

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Re: Moths and dust
« Reply #6 on: 05/09/2016 05:30:30 »
Don't know particularly about bald heads, but the main reason moths are attracted to skin is that they like the salt in sweat - if your head sweats a lot, then they will love all that salt you are excreting.

So,moths prefer bald heads because the non-bald ones' sweats are blocked by the hair? Does hair excrete sweat too?
 

The Naked Scientists Forum

Re: Moths and dust
« Reply #6 on: 05/09/2016 05:30:30 »

 

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