With the sweet scent of the Joe Pye weed filling the air I walked along the single lane road that traverses the marsh. The hum of the Clearwing Moth i

Do Moths Sing?

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2020-09-16 14:22:33

With the sweet scent of the Joe Pye weed filling the air I walked along the single lane road that traverses the marsh. The hum of the Clearwing Moth is heard even over the droning of the grasshoppers. Her daytime flight mimics that of the hummingbird floating effortlessly between the flowers. On closer examination I noticed that she first hovers over the bloom fanning it with her powerful wings and then moving back to the previous one. A few years ago Israeli scientists learned that Flower pedals can actually function as an ear. I’ll let those dedicated to pure science opine about specifics of the process. What I wonder about is what song the flowers hear? Are the pollenators able to tune the flowers to suit their individual tastes? Can they adjust the flavonoids by grooming the the blooms with a specific wavelength of wingbeats? Moths have a highly tuned sense of smell. Perhaps it’s developed enough to detect which flowers are producing what the moth needs. I watched the Clearwing Moth in tonight’s feature image return to this individual flower without feeding several times. Each time it seemed to rise and fall slightly as it changed the frequency of its wingbeats. Each time I could hear a slight variations in pitch and intensity of its hum. Could it be that pollenators are in some way “singing” over the flowers? I don’t know the answer and I’m not really set up to test that theory but I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that God in his role as the engineer of life had thought of even this small of a detail.

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