The moths hatch out at a period when oak leaves are not ready for their feeding, and the silk is by no means of a quality to compare with that of the common mulberry worm.
Mosquitoes are innumerable, and moths and ants of the most destructive kind, as well as others equally noxious and disagreeable.
These are only a few of the moths from which silks of various usefulness can be produced; but none of these presents qualities, saving perhaps cheapness alone, which can put them in competition with common silk.
Birds and mammals take the first place; the leading collections devote a good deal of attention to reptiles and batrachians; fishes and aquatic invertebrata are most often to be found only when there are special aquaria, whilst non-aquatic invertebrates are seldom to be seen and at most consist of a few moths and butterflies, spiders, scorpions and centipedes, molluscs and crustaceans.
Pliny says that their wood was everlasting, and therefore images of the gods were made of it; he makes mention also of the oil of cedar, or cedrium, distilled from the wood, and used by the ancients for preserving their books from moths and damp; papyri anointed or rubbed with cedrium were on this account called ced ati libri.
Sugar-canes suffer from the sugar cane borer (Diatioca sacchari) in the West Indies; tobacco from the larvae of hawk moths (Sphingidae) in America; corn and grass from various Lepidopterous pests all over the world.
In butterflies and moths the lacinia is absent while the galea becomes a flexible process, grooved on its inner face, so as to make with its fellow a hollow sucking-trunk, and the palp is usually very small.
Have appeared till towards the period of transformation and escape of the moths, the eggs subsequently hatched out might be depended on to yield a fair crop of silk; should the moths prove perfectly free from corpuscles after depositing their eggs the next generation would certainly live well through the larval stage.
Leaf-feeding beetles and larvae of moths are best got rid of by shaking the branches and collecting the insects.
Butterflies and moths are remarkable for their number, size, variety and beauty.