Moth Facts: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Mary Grace Miller

Mary Grace has taught first grade for 8 years and has a Bachelor's degree in Elementary Education and is licensed in ESL.

You've seen moths around your house, especially around lights at night. But what are moths? How are they different from butterflies? This lesson will teach you facts about moths' habitat, food, and life cycle.

What Are Moths?

Molly the moth is off to see the world! Let's find out where she goes, what she eats, and who she meets.

The luna moth is only found in North America.
moth

Molly is an insect. Insects are animals with six legs, two antennae, and three body parts (head, thorax, and abdomen). Most insects have wings, and Molly the moth does too. Molly has a big body and not just two, but four wings! She is gray, but some of her moth friends are brown. When Molly opens her wings, she is only half an inch long, but some of her moth friends can be as long as one foot. There are over 160,000 different kinds of moths that are all different colors, shapes, and sizes.

Butterflies and moths are in the same insect family, but there are a few ways you can tell them apart. You usually see moths at night, while butterflies are more active during the day. Both have antennae, but butterflies have longer, thinner antennae and moths have shorter antennae. And when they rest, butterflies usually have their wings closed, while moths rest with their wings open.

Where Do Moths Live?

Molly lives on land. She chooses to live in Africa, but moths can be found on all continents except Antarctica. She lives near plants so she has a good place to lay her eggs when she is ready.

What Do Moths Eat?

Moths use a special tongue-like body part called a proboscis to suck the nectar and sap out of plants.
moth

Molly and her moth friends like to eat sap from trees and nectar from flowers. Nectar is a sweet liquid that can be found in many flowers. Molly has a body part called a proboscis that she uses to suck up the nectar and sap. A proboscis is a tube-shaped part of her mouth that looks like a straw. What a great way to drink!

How Do Moths Grow?

Moths spin cocoons between the larvae and pupae stage of their metamorphosis.
moth

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