Abundance and richness of Arctiinae moths throughout the night in a Cerrado area


  • Carolina Moreno Biota Projetos e Consultoria Ambiental Ltda
  • Ângela S. Barbosa Universidade Federal de Goiás, Instituto de Ciências Biológicas, Departamento de Ecologia
  • Viviane G. Ferro Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul, Instituto de Biociências, Departamento de Zoologia https://orcid.org/0000-0002-6491-806X


Lepidoptera, nocturnal activity, relative humidity, temperature, temporal partition


Abstract: The main goal of this work was to investigate how the abundance and richness of Arctiinae moths varies over time, during the night. Specifically, we analyzed the following questions: (1) Is there a relationship between Arctiinae abundance and richness with the temperature and relative humidity? (2) What are the hours of activity of each species of moth? (3) Does the species composition differ over night? (4) Is it necessary to sample this group of moths throughout the night to have a representative sample of the species? We sampled the moths in Emas National Park (17°49’-18°28’S and 52°39’-53°10’W), Brazil. We selected seven sampling points in an area of savanna. At each sampling point, we collected the Arctiinae moths with a light trap (with a 15-W black light fluorescent light bulb), reflected in a white cloth (2 x 3 m) extended vertically. We sampled the moths in seven consecutive nights (one night in each sampling point, from December 13 to December 19, 2012, from 7 p.m. until 7 a.m.). We divided the samplings in twelve periods over the night, with an hour each. At each period of time, we measured the temperature and the relative humidity with a digital termohygrometer. We sampled 149 individuals belonging to 17 species of Arctiinae moths. Most species (70.5%) were active only for one or two hours at night. The species differed in terms of time activity. The higher abundance occurred at 8 p. m. (44 individuals), followed by 38 individuals at 9 p. m. and 23 at 10 p. m. The species richness was also higher in the early hours of the night. The temperature was the only variable that showed a positive and significative relationship with the Arctiinae moth abundance. The species richness was not influenced neither by the temperature nor by the relative air humidity. The possible causes of the peak of abundance and species richness in specific hours of the night are discussed.




How to Cite

Moreno, C., Barbosa, Ângela S., & Ferro, V. G. (2021). Abundance and richness of Arctiinae moths throughout the night in a Cerrado area. Biota Neotropica, 21(2). Retrieved from //www.biotaneotropica.org.br/BN/article/view/1814