I’m really enjoying finding Cladonia lichens in these colder months (helps me cope with the absence of beetles, but lichens are also pretty cool in general :) ) and I’m trying to find a good UV flashlight to identify certain species. What are some decent (and preferably affordable, < €50 if possible) UV flashlights that are available in Europe, or in the Netherlands specifically?
I don’t know if it’s available in the Netherlands, but I use the uvBeast V3 365nm MINI and have been pretty happy with it. I definitely like these UV flashlights with really heavy filters so that it’s mostly UV light that’s shining on your subjects and not other wavelengths. Only complaint I have is that the flap for the USB-C port is laughably bad.
Yes, that seems like a good one, although it only seems to be available on the homepage and on Amazon, which both ship from the US. I think I’ll first look for something that’s available from somewhere closer to the Netherlands.
Their everyday-carry ‘Tiki’ tiny flashlights come in various flavors (UV as main light / UV as secondary light / green or blue phosphorescent body or not), not sure what’s good for lichen work. I have a Tiki GITD, good enough for night walks, the secondary UV light totally works for mineral detection, while its secondary CRI light may assist in case of tricky photo conditions.
Beware of cheap imitations: most ‘UV’ LEDs are very poor, more like blue-violet light sources, hardly triggering any fluorescence.
My Tiki has arrived today - thanks for the suggestion! I’m currently charging it before I can give it a proper try, but the UV “looks” good so far. I’ll be able to use it for the first time over the weekend, when I’ll likely revisit an observation that requires UV for ID.
It came with a bit of juice already in the battery - enough to see that it works a lot better than a cheaper and weaker UV light I already owned. That one wasn’t able to trigger fluorescence on the fabric of my couch :)
I hope this conversation stays open and other lights are suggested as well. I am in Canada so other lights might be more easily available. It was mentioned above that some of the lights only have a one metre range. That is good for lichens but I’d prefer one with more range if I’m looking for scorpions or things like flying squirrels. For scorpions so that I see them far enough away that I can be alert for snakes and for flying squirrels because they are up high in the trees. I have flying squirrels on my property and really do want to see if they glow under UV lights. So if people know of light with a longer range then I’d appreciate any information.
The one I mention as having a ~1m range (= making things at your feet glow) is the Nitecore Tiki GITD with its 500mW UV LED. The “Nitecore Tiki UV” has a stronger 1000mW UV LED, so I’d expect a slightly better reach - it’s up to @Mr_Fizzy to tell us by how much. I’m not a Nitecore fan, but of the various pocketable casual UV flashlights I’ve tried… it was the only brand to allow decent fluorescence.
For the long-range detection of flying scorpions ( ) I’m sure other brands have much more powerful “true” flashlights.
I hope the bad weather clears up soon so I can test the range for the first time
Will keep you updated on that.
Edit: Looks like the weather is fine right now. I hope it stays that way so I can find a good day to revisit that one observation.
Wow, I hope that they do glow up - that would be amazing! Finding flying squirrels with UV lights sounds like a fun activity.