Moths: The Underappreciated Pollinators

When people talk about pollinators, most of the attention goes to bees, butterflies, and birds. We actively see these daytime dwellers at work, flying from flower to flower as they help plant life thrive. But with the serious population declines that honeybeesbumblebees, and monarch butterflies have all seen in recent decadesthere’s a need for greater pollinator diversity. 

This is where nighttime pollinators like moths can help. 

While not all moths are nocturnalmost are. Due to this nocturnal preference, along with some pest-like qualities, moths haven’t received the same amount of attention or research as daytime pollinators. But things are changing, and we are discovering that moths have a lot of potential for pollination. 

In fact, a recent study shows that moths visit more plants than bees, including plants largely ignored by other pollinators. They also act as a food source for other pollinators such as birds and bats. This makes moths a great addition to pollinator habitat. 

Attracting and Promoting Moths as Pollinators 

The best way to help moths thrive and promote pollinator diversity is by actively establishing pollinator habitat. Through the Conservation Reserve Program, farmers and landowners can receive rental payments based on soil rental rates in exchange for taking marginal land out of active production and establishing native vegetation. 

This not only helps protect and heal damaged soil, but it provides a much-needed home for pollinators such as moths. Increased pollinator presence has been shown to have a very positive impact on neighboring farmland and crop yields 

By providing habitat for both daytime and nighttime pollinators, you can maximize pollination activity. In order to do this, you must be strategic about selecting CRP seed mixes. Different flowers attract different types of pollinators.  

Because moths largely work in dim light and darkness, bright, colorful flowers don’t do anything for them. Instead, they are drawn to white and dull colors. Certain plants are also “night-scented”, releasing a sweet fragrance as the sun sets. 

If you are looking to purchase pollinator seed mix to plant on your ownour sister company All Native Seed can help here. 

If you’d prefer to have someone handle the establishment of pollinator habitat for you, FDCE offers turn-key CRP solutions. Our team of CRP experts will take care of everything from seed purchasing to planting to report submission and more. With FDCE, you can enjoy the benefits of pollinator diversity with little-to-no work on your end.