Get to know the insects in Elgin County. Learn how to identify them, the habitat they live in, and Best Stewardship Practices for maintaining healthy populations of these rare gems of Carolinian Canada.
Bumble bees are iconic and essential pollinators in agriculture, native habitat and urban areas. However increasing threats such as changes to habitat, pesticide use and disease, mean that many species of once common wild bumble bees are suffering alarming population declines. A new citizen science project aims to mobilize an army of volunteers across North America with their cameras, to track and conserve native bumble bees. Bumble Bee Watch is a collaborative effort allowing a growing body of bee enthusiasts to submit photos, use online tools to identify them, and have their observations verified by an expert. Observations will be used to gather data about the distribution and abundance of North America’s bumble bees and target conservation efforts for at-risk species. To join the community, and learn more about bumblebees, ongoing conservation efforts, and tips for photographing these important insects go to www.bumblebeewatch.org. Another great place to start is with the comprehensive Princeton Field Guide Bumble Bees of North America (P.H. Williams et al., 2014).
Insects in Elgin County
- Laura's Clubtail (Stylurus laurae)
- Riverine Clubtail (Stylurus amnicola)
- Monarch (Danaus plexippus)
- Rusty-patched Bumble Bee (Bombus affinis)
Species Identification Resources
- Ontario Butterflies
- North American Bumble Bees
- Insects, Bees and Spiders
- Field Guide to Syrphidae of Northeastern North America
- Regional Lists of Ontario Odonata (Dragonflies and Damselflies)
- Odonata Central (Ontario Checklist)
- Audubon Butterflies App
Where to Submit Observations?
- Species at Risk and Significant Species should be reported to the Natural Heritage Information Centre (NHIC) through their online reporting form. Multiple observations can be submitted by downloading and completing a template spreadsheet. Visit the NHIC website here.
- eButterfly – report and share your butterfly observations and photographs and contribute to science and conservation
- The Ontario Butterfly Atlas, compiled by the Toronto Entomologists’ Association also accepts butterfly records or call Colin Jones (NHIC) 705-755-2166. Note: submissions to eButterfly are automatically shared.
- Bumble Bee Watch – a collaborative effort to track and conserve North American bumble bees. Members can upload photos, identify the species, and have them verified by an expert. Join the effort to locate rare or endangered populations of bumble bees! www.bumblebeewatch.com or call Wildlife Preservation Canada at 1-800-956-6608.
- Atlas of Ontario Odonata – temporarily unavailable online, sightings of common dragonflies and damselflies can be submitted to the Toronto Entomologist’s Association, who compile the Atlas with the NHIC. Call Colin Jones at the NHIC 705-755-2166.
- OdonataCentral is designed to gather and disseminate information about dragonfly and damselfly distribution and abundance across the Western Hemisphere.
- For all other insect types, please complete the General Field Data Form and submit to your local Area Coordinator or to Carolinian Canada