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Bogong Capital of the World?

By Krystal Sanders - 30 October 2014 12

bogong

A couple of weeks ago over a cocktail at Honkytonks a friend pre-warned me of a plague like no other that was about to hit Canberra. Intrigued I valiantly yelled “Tell me more”! Well perhaps it wasn’t quite like that but I was certainly interested. So apparently Canberra is a victim of Bogongs. Many of them. In fact thousands of them and they are on their way.

And no not the double plugger flannelette kind of bogan. This is much creepier. It’s a moth.

Those creepy little critters that hide in the corners of room until the light goes out and you can hear them fluttering around your head. To a Canberra newbie, this is a frightening thought for a moth-phobic single girl.

Oddly enough these critters love to congregate around our Parliament House attracted to the booming lights throughout the night. They sit in every crevice and for those that work at Parliament house; they are subjected to some interesting experiences each morning as they arrive to work.

After some quick research I discovered this is a privy to living on the East coast. These night raving party moths are on holiday to escape the warmer climates of Queensland and NSW and on a trip to the caves of Snowy Mountains for the summer and start arriving as early as September.

Now, if you are lucky enough to live and work around Parliament house then I’ve heard a story or two that you can’t escape them, in your morning coffee, through the corridors, littered throughout the house and just when you think it’s safe to yawn you receive an unexpected morning snack.

Again this is something pretty unique to Canberra I have recently learned, but perhaps one that I’m happy to not get excited about.

Obviously this phenomenal act of nature cannot be stopped, any small flying animal that can fly droves over 1000km deserves it’s moment in the spotlight (pardon the pun) but in turn to help combat the problem I’ve found a couple of interesting ways to turn this somewhat negative experience into a positive.

Play Masterchef in the kitchen.

Indigenous groups used to feast on these tasty morsels in a variety of ways, either roasting them up for their crunchy nutty deliciousness, smushing them into a lovely moth cake or include them in a batch of damper. Each moth contains up to 1800 kilojoules of energy, so if it’s off pay week then Bear Grylls eat your heart out.

Feed them to your pet possums.

Everyone has a pet possum right? And pets can be expensive. So relish in the fact that you have at least two months of free pet food.

Okay, so  really their uses are limited, but fear not, a big plus is the Bogong moths cannot destroy your clothes- but if in doubt best to keep all the doors and windows shut!

What’s Your opinion?


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12 Responses to
Bogong Capital of the World?
m_ratt 7:45 pm 02 Nov 14

Each moth contains up to 1800 kilojoules of energy

Each moth?
If your source is the SMH, then read again: “100 grams of bogong abdomen containing almost 39 grams of fat and 1805 kilojoules of energy”

My estimate is that each moth weighs only a few grams, thus each moth is would be closer to several hundred KJ rather than 1800.
Common sense would tell you that you couldn’t get your average daily energy requirement from eating 4.5 moths.

As for replacing pet food, my cat only wants to play with them. Once they’re dead their boring and not dinner.

Madam Cholet 2:08 pm 02 Nov 14

MERC600 said :

Has anyone actually eaten one? recent like.
I know they were woofed down once as a delicacy up in the mountains, but I guess they have been taken over these days by a half chicken ‘n chips.

Chickens have more meat. But they would be easier to catch if they were buzzing round the lights.

MERC600 5:57 pm 01 Nov 14

Has anyone actually eaten one? recent like.
I know they were woofed down once as a delicacy up in the mountains, but I guess they have been taken over these days by a half chicken ‘n chips.

Gungahlin_Bob 8:36 am 01 Nov 14

Get yourself a cat!

Our cat is now about 8 years old and pretty sedate, but the minute we yell “get the moth” the cat’s face turns kitten like with big wide eyes and a youthful innocence, rapidly turning its head looking for the moth.

It then proceeds to bound around all over the place pouncing into the air trying to catch the moth in its two paws (and generally gets it)….and then chases it around the house, sliding and banging into walls.

Seems to like the nutty taste as well…..

No moth problem here!! ….except when I come out the sliding screen door each morning with a cup of coffee, and about 10 of them fall in front of my face and occasionally fall in the coffee. These are the ones that wanted to get into the house but couldn’t….

Regards

Gungahlin_bob

Madam Cholet 7:45 am 01 Nov 14

neanderthalsis said :

Madam Cholet said :

Bogongs can be caught. It’s not easy and involves quite a bit of jumping around and ‘getting inside a moths head’ to try and pre-empt how they are going to act,

Banging mindlessly into a light fitting ain’t hard to predict.

They are attracted to the light, but in my experience they will do anything to avoid being caught, including flitting all over the room. The real trouble is trying not to cast a shadow over them so they know you are sneaking up on them. Should be a national sport this time of year.

Rustygear 11:54 pm 31 Oct 14

Bogong moths are distinctively and deeply Australian. Their history is tied to the mountain forests of southeast Australia, and before 1788 were a major part of the ecology and the dreaming of the indigenous people of those forests. When I see the great cloud of moths around Parliament house I see a fertile opportunity to celebrate that this animal comes each year and chooses exactly that particular site to congregate; a gesture from the very guts of Australia’s past, which marks that hill, Parliament Hill, as a special place.

dungfungus 10:25 am 31 Oct 14

Do these beasts eat clothes in wardrobes?
If so, are we allowed to kill them or they protected as like legless lizzards?.

neanderthalsis 8:20 pm 30 Oct 14

Madam Cholet said :

Bogongs can be caught. It’s not easy and involves quite a bit of jumping around and ‘getting inside a moths head’ to try and pre-empt how they are going to act,

Banging mindlessly into a light fitting ain’t hard to predict.

Madam Cholet 1:13 pm 30 Oct 14

I have relocated about 5 bogong moths in the last week. As someone who does not like the thought of insects, particularly fast moving things inside the house, I do force myself to relocate any stray where possible. You have to remember they don’t want to really be there – have some sympathy – it was your lights that attracted them.

Bogongs can be caught. It’s not easy and involves quite a bit of jumping around and ‘getting inside a moths head’ to try and pre-empt how they are going to act, but it’s quite good fun.

To handle they are a bit wriggly and it’s a two hand job really once you have one in your grasp. The feel quite soft and a bit fluttery if you don’t keep them contained. You also have to ensure that they don’t fly right back in the door again.

Please try to get ok with these little guys.They don’t last very long so they may as well have a chance whilst they are here – just like you.

And I have to say that bogongs are not a patch on the May flies I encountered in the US.

dungfungus 12:06 pm 30 Oct 14

I must go to SpecSavers.
When I saw the headline I first read it as “Bogan Capital of the World?”

Kim F 12:02 pm 30 Oct 14

Tis truly spectacular at night as the sea-gulls go crazy chasing moths around the flood-lit Parliament House. It looks like it is snowing.

Alexandra Craig 10:20 am 30 Oct 14

OMG. They are so bad at Parliament House. I’ve never seen anything like it before in my life. They get everywhere and they’re disgusting. They’re particularly bad in the press gallery because the cleaners aren’t up there as regularly as the other parts of Parl House. One of these critters attacked me the other day – it literally flew at my head. I’m convinced it was trying to kill me. Bogong moths are killing machines.

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