Moth: 15 Facts You Won’t Believe!

Read these interesting facts about this arthropod

A moth belongs to the paraphyletic groups of insects and they are great pollinators for flowers, and like butterflies, they also help flowers to grow. There are many types of moths.

Moths make up the wide variety in the Lepidoptera order. Moths are believed to be nocturnal as well as crepuscular.

One of the gypsy moth facts is that they are quite big compared to other moth types, and they contribute by acting as great pollinators for flowers.

To find out more interesting facts and information about other animals, you can also check our guides on the gypsy moth and the luna moth for more enriching and mind-blowing facts.

Moth facts

Fact File

What do they prey on?

Natural Fibers Found in Clothes, Nectar, Fruits

What do they eat?


Average litter size?


How much do they weigh?

0.0001-0.4 oz (0.003-12 g)

How long are they?

0.16-11 inches (0.04-27.94 cm)

How tall are they?

0.5 inches (14 mm)

What do they look like?

Brown, Yellow, Orange, Red, Black, White

Skin Type


What are their main threats?

Birds, Lizards, Bats, Spiders, Humans

What is their conservation status?

Least Concern

Where you'll find them

Quiet Forests, Pastures, Dark Basements, Attics


America, Africa, Asia, Europe





Scientific Name



Opostegidae, Saturniidae, Arthropoda



Moth Interesting Facts

What type of animals are moths?

Moths fall in the paraphyletic group of insects, and it includes all the members of the genus Lepidoptera, except the butterfly.

What class of animals do moths belong to?

Moths are a part of the Insecta class, which is the largest group within the Arthropod phylum.

How many moths are there in the world?

There are almost 160,000 moths species worldwide, of which more than 11,000 species are found in the USA only, which makes them ten times more abundant than butterflies.

Where do moths live?

Moths can be found in almost every major part of the world like Africa, Asia, Central America, Eurasia, Europe, Oceania, North America, and South America.

What is a moth's habitat?

Moths can be easily found in quiet and dark forests and pasture lands; they can also be found in tropical settings and grasslands. A major part of the moth species is attracted to light sources as light sources confuse them. and they tend to lose their sense of direction. They usually prefer warm places. During winters, they tend to migrate south towards warmer temperatures. They are known for flying long distances during the migration period. They are adaptive in nature. Most of them are nocturnal. Some moth species look just like butterflies.

Who do moths live with?

As moths have many species and varieties, some moths like to stay alone or move in pairs like butterflies, and other moths move in large family-like structures or groups called eclipses. The living style and lifecycle of moths vary from species to species.

How long do moths live?

The lifespan varies in different moth species. The average lifespan of a moth can be estimated to be around 40 days. Some moths can live for a year. Some moths live only for days, weeks, or a month. Some moths, like the hummingbird moth and luna moth, can live up to three months. Different moths species have evolved differently.

How do they reproduce?

Moths have evolved with time. When female moths are ready for mating, they release some chemicals to attract the male moths. The male moth then follows this smell and gets attracted to the female.

When done with mating, the female moths lay their eggs on plants. On average, 100 eggs are laid. In most cases, within ten days, the eggs hatch and begin the caterpillar stage. This is when they begin to eat plants as food. To prepare for the pupal stage, caterpillars need to eat almost 2,700 times their body weight. Then, they prepare cocoons around themselves in the pupal stage after almost three weeks or a month. From the cocoons, the caterpillars finally emerge as adult moths.

What is their conservation status?

Currently, some moth species are considered Endangered, like the garden tiger and white ermine moth, as they have lost their habitats because of humans. Most species are of Least Concern.

Moth Fun Facts

What do moths look like?

(Moths, depending on their species, come in many interesting colors and patterns

Moths are covered with scales and hair-like follicles all over their body. Moths have two antennae on their heads that resemble feathers. They have wings attached on both sides. Some species have a large wingspan. Some families of moths have beautiful patterns and shades on their wings.

In North America, cecropia moths are giant ones in the family of moths. One of the luna moth facts is that they have a long wingspan while others have a small wingspan. Puss moths are white. Moths can be pink, black, red, yellow, or brown. Moths exist in a huge range of colors in their species. Their colors can scare away predators and other insects and help them camouflage during the day or night.

How cute are they?

Moths are very vibrant to look at, often catching the human eye. Most moths look as beautiful as butterflies, so if you can consider butterflies cute, then you'll find moths to be cute as well.

How do they communicate?

Moths are known to communicate and interact with the help of chemicals. Some eared moths can even produce sound waves to communicate; some species of moths, like the tiger moths, have auditory organs as well.

How big are moths?

The size of moths can vary from one species to another; some species are even smaller than half an inch (1.27 cm), and some species are bigger than 11 in (27.94 cm) in size.

How fast can moths fly?

Some species of moths can fly up to 19-55 mph (50-90 kph).

How much do moths weigh?

The average weight of the moth species can range from 0.0001-0.4 oz (0.003-12 g).

What are the male and female names of the species?

There are no such sex-specific names for this insect. They are referred to as the male moth and the female moth, respectively.

What would you call a baby moth?

A baby moth is generally called a caterpillar or a larva after this insect hatches from its egg.

What do they eat?

Small caterpillars eat the plant leaves on which they hatch as their food. Plant fibers and any natural fabrics, fruits and flower nectar, and cloth fabrics are the food of adult moths.

Are they dangerous?

Generally, moths are not dangerous to humans, but some moth types and some caterpillars and larvae can be dangerous for humans. The tiger moth larvae can be a bit toxic to humans as their sting can irritate the skin.

Would they make a good pet?

Moths are generally not kept as pets. Even if you want to keep a moth as your pet, you should keep a small and harmless caterpillar as your pet until they pupate and become adult moths.

Did you know...

A rosy maple moth is known as the smallest silkmoth and got its name because of the beautiful pink shades on its wings.

Did you know that moths and butterflies look quite similar but are indeed different?

There are some major differences. Moths are nocturnal, while butterflies are diurnal. Moth antennae look like feathers, while butterfly antennae have small ball-like figures on the top. The way of arranging their wings on flowers is also different between them.

Different types of moth

There are almost 160,000 types of moths worldwide, out of which 11,000 are found in the USA. Some common types of moth include the tiger moth, luna moth, atlas moth, gypsy moth, hummingbird moths, rosy maple moths, domestic silk moths, and many others that live in Africa, America, Europe, Asia, and many other parts of the world and can be differentiated in terms of their appearance, patterns, and size.

Humans and moths

Moths are harmless to humans, except a few. They can, however, create a mess and destroy cloth fabrics; thus, it is better to get rid of moths if they are in your household. In order to get rid of moths, mothballs can be used. Mothballs are chemical balls of insecticide and pesticide that keep moths and their larvae away from your household. You can use other pesticides too to keep insects and moths away.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! Learn more about some other arthropods from our Promethea moth facts and io moth facts pages.

You can even occupy yourself at home by coloring in one of our free printable moth coloring pages.



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