And you thought moths were boring © Robin Hoskyns/Minden Pictures
National Moth Week shines the porch light on an unlikely hero. Unlike their showier cousins, butterflies, moths get a bad rap from time to time, and that’s fair, as caterpillars of some moth species are agricultural pests. But before you break out the mothballs, take a gander at winged wonders like the comet moth, shown here. Scientists estimate that there are some 160,000 species of moths worldwide, many just as stunning as our comet moth, and tracking their health often helps us gauge the health of entire ecosystems.