For this experiment, I want to test the following hypotheses: H1 all types of lighting will attract moths to it.H2 florescent lighting will attract most moths to it.H3 incandescent lighting will attract most moths to it.
The independent variable for this study will be the variety of lights i.e.
- Incandescent and fluorescent and (qualitative)
- Wattage of the lights ( qualitative)
Materials and Methods
For the experiment, I will buy incandescent and fluorescent light bulbs from any general provision store. I will buy 40W, 60W and 100W varieties of each type of bulb and make light traps. The traps will be designed in a manner so that moths that are attracted by the light source fall into a small water trough and are collected for identification and count. We will identify two 2mx2m plots 500m away from one another. I will lay the plots in an open area, so there is no chance of moths missing the light source because of dense vegetation cover. The traps will run from 2000 hours of one day to 0200 hours of the next day. Every night one incandescent and fluorescent light of the same wattage will be used for the traps. The next day, I will count the number of moths that visited each light trap. I will run the experiment setup for three consecutive days with fluorescent and incandescent bulbs of equal wattage.
First day 40 watts, second day 60 watts, and third day 100 watts. Since both type of bulbs( incandescent and fluorescent) will be used on the same day, differences in weather conditions will not affect the test results. As a control, water troughs without bulbs attached to them will be placed 353m away from each type working light trap. I believe that very few moths will come to the control water trough as it does not emit any light. The traps without light bulbs will account for any other confounding variable that might affect the test results. After three days of testing is over, we will replicate the same setup at a different area again for three days and compare the data accumulated from different sites.
I will use the two types of bulbs as two treatments and the response will be the number of moths visiting each site. The wattage of the bulbs will be covariates. Based on the data gathered, I will try to see if there is any correlation between the independent and dependent variable using IBM SPSS statistical software. If the data is normally distributed, I may also try to fit a Generalized Linear Model to see how the number of moth varies with different light sources and which variables affect moth count the most i.e. the type of bulb or the wattage of the bulb.
ConclusionMoths attracted to light sources have a higher mortality risk(Frank, 1988). The results of this experiment will help us understand which type of light has the most impact on moths. Based on the findings of this study we can answer other questions. Do different colors of light attract moths more? What else would influence the pattern of attraction do different moths species vary in their choice of incandescent and fluorescent bulbs?
Frank, K. D. (1988). Impact of outdoor lighting on moths: an assessment. Journal of the Lepidopterists’ Society (USA).
Longcore, T., & Rich, C. (2004). Ecological light pollution. Frontiers in Ecology and the Environment, 2(4), 191–198. Retrieved from http://www.esajournals.org/doi/abs/10.1890/1540-9295(2004)002[0191:ELP]2.0.CO;2