Author Options:

Anyone tried a (true) UV LED based moth trap? Answered

I have also commented on a seemingly related old dead thread but hope for better luck here.

Firstly, did anyone ever make any progress with building and successfully using an LED based moth lure/trap?

Secondly and if yes, any advice?

I am currently in the process of building a lure/trap that will use reflected wavelengths (interchangeable LED head) based on the principle that Moths (as pollinators) and flowers (as pollinatees) see and reflect UV light respectively and if that is true then surely i can take advantage of this to build a targeted trap to trick the moths in. note i will be testing UV wavelength (365nm), violet (400nm) IR and white LEDs.



Answer 6 years ago

That's a good link, a lot of interested info there, unfortunately the LED heads he uses in the first design are visible/near-UV, interestingly the reptile tube that gives out UVA and UVB (i'll be playing with UVA) did ok... i'll live and hope!


6 years ago

Kiteman posted a similar question some time ago and I think the conclusion was that UV LEDs would be nowhere near bright enough to do the job.  Serious moth enthusiasts use mercury vapour lamps, but I've had the idea of using the type of UV tube normally used for exposing photo-resist when making PCBs.  I've got one but have had no chance to try it yet as the weather's still a bit cold for moths over here in the UK.


Answer 6 years ago

Cheers for the reply Andy, I'm in the UK too, moths tend to fly year round though fewer species in the colder months.

On the brightness note all the comparisons i can find that indicate brighter traps are better compare bulbs unmeasured for UV so an MV bulb which is brighter but is also producing more UV than other bulbs does better, this could either be due to the 'brightness' or UV output, if it is UV output then LEDs producing purely UV wavelength should be in with a shot..

also people seem to focus on the blacklight close UV wavelengths rather than actual 'invisible' UV which are used by the American CDC to increase capture rates of flies at night which also see in UV.

I think the area is seriously untested, a lot of people seem to use MV because that's what other moffers do, always have done and it is better in comparison with other bulbs...

... alternatively i may just be being optimistic..