THe Cambridge Moth Ball

Come and be dazzled by the extraordinary nighttime creatures known as moths. Marvel at their mysterious habits, coloration, and special place in our ecology as you learn how to attract, photograph and ID moths.

Noctuid, Geometer, Sphinx ….moths always amaze. From the time of the Ancient Egyptians to today’s NPR storytellers, moths have held us spellbound with their style, colors, habits, and mysterious ways. 

As part of National Moth Week, we will explore moths up close and share the data and photos we collect with researchers.

If you are interested in insects, butterflies, moths, or the wildlife of Cambridge, or if you like nature or nighttime, this event is for you. Photographers interested in creative moth portraits are especially encouraged to attend.

No previous mothing experience is required! Bring your picnic and carry out and recycle your trash. The moths will thank you! 

Your Hosts

Io moth

About Moths

  • Moths are some of the most diverse and successful creatures on the planet.
  • Massachusetts is estimated to have as about 2,900   species of moths.
  • Scientists estimate there are 150,000 to 500,000 moth species worldwide.
  • Moths are vital pollinators and they also play a critical role in the health of our deciduous woodlands.
  • Most moths are nocturnal, but some fly in daylight like butterflies. 
  • Without moths, there would be far fewer birds. Some mammals, like bats, also depend on moths.
  • Moths are masters of biomimicry and camouflage—except when they are not. Some species are large, showy, and dazzling.
  • Finding cool moths can be as simple as shining a flashlight out a window and waiting for them to show up.
  • Moths are not well understood. What questions do you have about moths? Let’s figure out how to answer them.

Learn More

Here are some links to explore in advance.

Mass Moths

Bug Guide

Mothing in Massachusetts

Tom Murrray’s Moths Page

Insect ID (Massachusetts Moths)


Wednesday, July  24, 2024,
7:00 pm – 9:30 pm 

Kingsley Park at Fresh Pond Reservation

An evening of community science, moth collecting, data collecting, photography, IDing moths—and some children’s activities.

Attire: Mothical or Mystical

Family-friendly. Children with an Adult +1 or more are very welcome. There are portapotties and water bottle filling stations on site.

Special Guests

Billy Hickey, Nature photographer [LINK]
Teá Montagna, Entomologist, moth scientist [LINK]



Register in advance to receive information about parking, public transportation, rain dates, and other details. By registering, you’re helping us plan a better event. Thank you!

Questions about Moth Ball? Email us?

What to bring

Learn more about National Moth Week and become a community scientist.

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