This is a sample from Chapter One of Gene’s book, “Moths of the Limberlost.” We hope the reader will enjoy and want to read more and visit the Limberlost Cabin in Geneva. This nature study book has stood the test of time.
Primarily, I went to the swamp to study and reproduce the birds. I never thought they could have a rival in my heart. But these fragile night wanderers, these moon-flowers of June’s darkness, literally “Thrust themselves upon me.” When my cameras were placed before the home of a pair of birds, the bushes parted to admit light, and clinging to them I found a creature, often having the bird’s sweep of wing, of color pale green with decorations of lavender and yellow or running the gamut from palest tans to darkest browns, with markings of pink or dozens of other irresistible combinations of color, the feathered folk found a competitor that often outdistanced them in my affections, for I am captivated easily by color and beauty of form.
At first, because these moths made studies of exquisite beauty, I merely stopped a few seconds to reproduce them, before proceeding with my work. Soon I found myself filling the waiting time, when birds were slow in coming before the cameras, when clouds obscured the light too much for fast exposures, or on gray days, by searching moths. Then in collecting abandoned nests, cocoons were found on limbs, inside stumps, among leaves when gathering nuts, or queer shining pupae cases came to light as I lifted wild flowers in the fall. All these were carried to my little conservatory, placed in as natural conditions as possible, and studies were made from the moths that emerged the following spring. I am not sure but that “Moths of the Limberlost Cabin” would be the most appropriate title for this book.