Inexpensive Blacklight Set-up

Bio Quip has what is considered the top of the line blacklight for insects.
https://www.bioquip.com/Search/WebCatalog.asp?category=2900&prodtype=1
The cost was a bit higher than I wanted to spend in order to see just how interested I would be in this type of activity.

I wanted to create an inexpensive blacklight to use in my yard to see what kind of insects I could attract so I went for a stroll through WalMart and Home Depot. What I put together costs less than $20 total and gives me a workable solution. It is by no means as good as the one produced by Bio Quip, but is something that I can easily use for a fraction of the cost.

Bayco 8.5'' Clamp Light
http://www.walmart.com/ip/Bayco-8.5-Clamp-Light/14003467

with a 60W Equivalent Black Spiral CFL Light Bulb
http://www.homedepot.com/p/Feit-Electric-60W-Equivalent-Black-Spiral-CFL-Light-Bulb-BPESL15T-BLB/100553168?cm_sp=BazVoice--RLP--100553168-_-x

Total cost was about $15.

Give it a shot and let me know how it works for you.

So far I've attracted multiple species of moths, wasps and beetles plus other bugs. With a portable battery I took it out to the desert for the first time and it worked well there too. Some of the linked observations actually have the insect sitting on the inner rim of the light reflector.

Anotado por finatic finatic, 12 de mayo de 2014 a las 05:52 PM

Observaciones

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 17, 2014 08:58 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019454

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 15, 2014 09:03 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 14, 2014 09:17 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Cochinilla Mediterránea (Armadillidium vulgare)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 14, 2014 10:11 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Mosquitos Enanos (Familia Chironomidae)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 14, 2014 09:21 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 14, 2014 09:20 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Avispas Icneumónidas (Familia Ichneumonidae)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 14, 2014 08:38 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Catarina Convergente (Hippodamia convergens)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 14, 2014 09:18 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 14, 2014 10:14 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Palomilla de Alacena (Plodia interpunctella)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 18, 2014 09:38 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Típulas, Zancudos Gigantes Y Parientes (Infraorden Tipulomorpha)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 23, 2014 04:43 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 24, 2014 09:39 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 23, 2014 09:48 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019471

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Polilla Barrenadora del Maíz (Elasmopalpus lignosella)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 24, 2014 09:42 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 21, 2014 09:59 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Polilla Tigre Mexicana (Apantesis proxima)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 18, 2014 10:22 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019462

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Polilla Leonada (Cyclophora nanaria)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 18, 2014 09:31 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019461

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 18, 2014 09:42 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Polilla o Gusano Cortador del Algodón (Spodoptera ornithogalli)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 29, 2014 09:28 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019485

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 29, 2014 09:21 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019310

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 14, 2014 08:41 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Polilla Tigre Mexicana (Apantesis proxima)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 2, 2014 10:12 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019760

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 1, 2014 09:45 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019750

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 1, 2014 09:49 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019749

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 1, 2014 09:50 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019739

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 30, 2014 10:25 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019491

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 30, 2014 09:56 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019488

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Polillas Tigre Y Parientes (Familia Erebidae)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 30, 2014 09:37 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 30, 2014 09:33 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019486

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 29, 2014 08:26 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 29, 2014 08:33 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 18, 2014 08:33 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019455

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Abril 30, 2014 10:07 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 01:21 AM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 01:07 AM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1020069

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 12:59 AM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1020073

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 12:54 AM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1020075

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Polilla Esfinge Rayada (Hyles lineata)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 12:50 AM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1020074

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 10:50 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019763

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 10:54 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019767

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 10:52 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1019766

Fotos / Sonidos

Qué

Mosquitos Enanos (Familia Chironomidae)

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 6, 2014 09:45 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 6, 2014 08:58 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 4, 2014 10:00 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 9, 2014 11:49 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 9, 2014 11:50 PM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

Fotos / Sonidos

Autor

finatic

Fecha

Mayo 10, 2014 12:03 AM PDT

Descripción

San Diego County, California, US

BAMONA record
http://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1020055

Comentarios

Nice. Do you take the reflector off the clamp light? I feel like it might be good to have the light itself as visible as possible. Also, what's your battery setup? Car battery?

Anotado por kueda hace mas de 8 años (Advertencia)

For the battery I use a Black & Decker 500-Watt Portable Power Station
https://www.google.com/#q=BLACK+%26+DECKER+500-Watt+Portable+Power+Station%09
I bought it at Lowes for around $100.
It weighs roughly 10 pounds so I don't carry it too far from the car but could if desired.

As for the reflector, I have been leaving it on so that I can direct the light to a certain spot. But i do plan on playing around with removing it to see if that makes a difference.

Anotado por finatic hace mas de 8 años (Advertencia)

Just wanted to let you know I have this setup running as I type this and it's great. I usually use a BioQuip light, but I didn't really want to ship one to New England or buy another, so I followed your advice and went to Home Depot. I have have it on a work lamp with the cage removed, just hanging in front of the sheet, plugged into a wall outlet, so not really worrying about power. I know a guy who really likes the Goal Zero power packs, which would work with an AC setup like this. The light is nowhere near as bright in the visible range as the BioQuip lights, but the moths seem to like it just fine. Anyway, thanks for the tips!

Anotado por kueda hace mas de 8 años (Advertencia)

Glad it's working for you. I've run both this set-up and a BioQuip one at the same time and have found that they attract different insects. I haven't done it enough to see if there is a pattern or not.
I agree, it isn't nearly as bright as the BioQuip model, but it is functional and the price can't be beat.

Anotado por finatic hace mas de 8 años (Advertencia)

It could actually be as bright in the UV and we just can't see it. I'd love to see spectrometer readings on the two lights to compare. This post shows data for the Feit bulb. I've been using this observation field to track which insects I've attracted with a UV light, but maybe we should start tracking make/model of the bulb? Like "Attractant light make / model" or something?

Anotado por kueda hace mas de 8 años (Advertencia)

I like that field. I've been using a different field for mine.
http://www.inaturalist.org/observation_fields/1010
I can start using the field that you are if you want to intermingle the data. It is probably a better overall field. By and large I am simply amazed at how many different taxa show up at a blacklight.

Anotado por finatic hace mas de 8 años (Advertencia)

Cool! Do you need an inverter to use it with the battery?

Anotado por northeastnaturalist hace casi 8 años (Advertencia)

That I don't know. I have an outdoor plug that so just plug it in there.

Anotado por finatic hace casi 8 años (Advertencia)

Neat...I've always wanted a moth trap or black light but never been able to afford it, and I've never met anyone who has had this setup. I might have to take a look into that. How do you stop the moths from circling around and leaving though? Do you have something for them to sit on other than the light itself?

Another quick question: are you able to take photographs at night or do you bring boxes for the good moths and keep them until morning?

Anotado por silversea_starsong hace mas de 7 años (Advertencia)

I aim the light at the wall of my house and they sit there. When out in the field I'll hang a sheet.
As for photographing at night, I have a small handheld flashlight and the flash on my camera. Together it usually works well enough. The photos aren't going to make the cover of Moth Monthly but they are usually good enough for ID.

Anotado por finatic hace mas de 7 años (Advertencia)

I have the parts on order from Amazon (btw, I set up my Amazon Smile account to donate to Sequoia Audubon, and You Can Too!), and am eager to try this where I am currently cat-sitting in Palo Alto. Bug lamp, here we come. But I am interested in you and @kueda are using the same observation field, and if I should too once this arrives (and the Big Fun arrives with it)?

Anotado por gyrrlfalcon hace mas de 6 años (Advertencia)

Oh goddess - wait'll I take this set up to my mother-in-law's house in Florida...

Anotado por gyrrlfalcon hace mas de 6 años (Advertencia)

I use the field "Black/UV Light Attracted" and toggle it to yes. I remember to do it most of the time, but not always.

Anotado por finatic hace mas de 6 años (Advertencia)

It looks like Home Depot stopped selling the black light bulb. I asked them and they said it was discontinued. The website also no longer shows it.

Anotado por silversea_starsong hace cerca de 4 años (Advertencia)

Ah, that's too bad. I'm sure they have similar bulbs at WalMart or other like stores. I actually saw some yesterday at a Halloween store.
I haven't tried it, but I wonder how well something like this would work. At 395nm the wavelength is decent.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01LRQ47Q8/ref=sspa_dk_detail_7?psc=1&pd_rd_i=B01LRQ47Q8&pf_rd_m=ATVPDKIKX0DER&pf_rd_p=4b9303cf-595a-449a-b0d6-15d3b199056d&pf_rd_r=V0WAHQ930B5Z5PWY2MK5&pd_rd_wg=isVki&pf_rd_s=desktop-dp-sims&pf_rd_t=40701&pd_rd_w=6qYiA&pf_rd_i=desktop-dp-sims&pd_rd_r=8d3c8dc1-b200-11e8-861c-cd06ea1130b1

Anotado por finatic hace cerca de 4 años (Advertencia)

Are there any good options that don't require somewhere to plug in? But maybe battery-powered bulbs are not so good...

Anotado por silversea_starsong hace cerca de 4 años (Advertencia)

Check out https://calnature.org/blog/2017/9/27/diy-moth-light. I've been using a setup like that alongside a BioQuip light this summer. My experience has been that these cheap LEDs work just fine. The potential downsides are that I don't think the lights are as bright (impossible to tell without something to measure the UV), and the narrow wavelength might mean they draw in less stuff, but IMO, the cost and portability outweigh both of those. I've been using https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B073Y7LRRT, which are nice b/c you can attach them end to end, along with a Anker PowerCore 26800, which is a somewhat more expensive battery than Damon described, but has never run out of juice.

Anotado por kueda hace cerca de 4 años (Advertencia)

Looks like this might be the closest replacement to Damon's setup light right now:
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B075K6NM8F/ref=ox_sc_mini_detail?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A2XMT4I8CH00V7

Anotado por silversea_starsong hace cerca de 4 años (Advertencia)

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