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Insects of Ontario
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Next Meeting

Saturday, November 19, 2016. 1:30 pm - 2:45 pm. Sixth Annual Quimby F. Hess Lecture. Royal Ontario Museum Theatre.
May Berenbaum
Hess Lecture

The event is free but registration is required. A reception for TEA members will follow the event.

Explore the honey behind the honey bee. From wax production to thermoregulation to colony defense, honey is an important source of energy for the European honey bee. With increasing evidence that phytochemicals produced by plants may contribute to honey bee health by influencing behavior and by enhancing defense against toxins and microbes, discover what these challenges mean for honey bees and the potential consequences for colony health.

Prof. Berenbaum is the president of the Entomological Society of America and head of the Department of Entomology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is known for her contributions to the field of chemical ecology, particularly the chemical mediation of interactions between plant-feeding insects and their host plants. She has testified before Congress on issues relating to honey bee health and pollinator decline. Her books for the general public include a honey cookbook and: Ninety-Nine Gnats, Nits, and Nibblers; Ninety-Nine More Maggots, Mites, and Munchers; Bugs in the System: Insects and Their Impact on Human Affairs; Buzzwords: A Scientist Muses on Sex, Bugs, and Rock 'n' Roll; and The Earwig's Tail: A Modern Bestiary of Multi-legged Legends. More information is included in this press release and on her university webpage.

Quimby F. Hess was a TEA president and a member of the TEA for over 40 years. This lecture is sponsored in his memory by his children, Jane and Robert Hess. The public are invited. A member of Quimby Hess' family will say a few words about his life. After the talk, there will be a free reception for the lecturer, TEA members and their guests, and the Hess family.

Enter through the main doors of the ROM on Bloor Street. Admission to the talk is free: after you register for the ROM website, your name will be on a list, and you will be given an armband giving you access to the ROM Theatre only.


Other Insect Activities and News

Fall bulletin of the Entomological Society of Canada.

A new article on the Azure blues of Ontario has been published by Chris Schmidt and Ross Layberry. This article proposes big changes for the classifications of this genus. See this page for a summary of the article.

Deadlines for submission to our newsletter: January 2017 issue - December 15; April 2017 issue - March 15th; and September 2017 issue - August 15.

The publications "Butterflies of Toronto" and "Spiders of Toronto" have been posted online. Copies are also available in Toronto public libraries.

Read more Ontario insect news: see the Fall 2015 newsletter of the Entomological Society of Ontario.

Our seasonal summary for the year 2015, Ontario Lepidoptera, was published in April 2016. The 2016 summary is expected to be published in March 2017.


Try out www.e-butterfly.org, a website for entering and displaying butterfly records put together by Maxim Larrivée of the Montreal Insectarium. The TEA is one of the sponsoring organizations. All Ontario data is provided to the TEA seasonal summaries and butterfly atlas project, so “eButterfly” provides an alternative way to store and submit your data. The hope is that this will be easier than entering the data yourself on a spreadsheet, as his site saves each person’s own past butterfly monitoring sites and allows the species observed to be checked off from a provincial species list. eButterfly now accepts records from all across Canada and the US. The TEA has received about 55,00 records records from eButterfly, which is about 20% of all data used in the TEA's butterfly atlas.

Keep in mind that all records submitted to eButterfly are plotted as exact points on the publicly-accessible eButterfly maps, unless you specifically ask for the data to be recorded as “sensitive” or “confidential.” This may be important if you are submitting records of endangered species or you are reporting data from areas for which there is no public access.


Records needed

Do you have Ontario butterfly records that you could make available to the TEA? Over 500 people now contribute records to us annually, which we use to produce the Ontario Butterfly Atlas Online and an annual seasonal summary (Ontario Lepidoptera ) of records for each species for the just-completed year. The seasonal summary also serves as a forum for notes and articles on aspects of biology, distribution, behaviour, survey work, etc. Photographs are also welcome, especially of significant records. Submit your records, notes, articles and photographs to Ross Layberry(rosslayberry@yahoo.ca), Jessica Linton (JessicaLinton86@gmail.com) or Colin Jones (colin.jones@ontario.ca). We encourage people to submit records by December 31, but records for inclusion in the atlas database are welcome at any time -- data from years ago is valuable as well.

More information on the summary, how to submit records, and a downloadable records template can be found at this link or by contacting any of the people above.

Ontario records of odonata are also welcomed. We do not have an odonata atlas or a seasonal summary at the moment, but we like to get there. More information on how to submit records, and a downloadable records template, can be obtained from Colin Jones (colin.jones@ontario.ca), 705-755-2166.


MNR Permit

Raise or collect monarch butterflies or swallowtails? Anyone who is involved in these activities needs a permit. Contact us if you are a TEA member and want to be covered by the club's permit.

Our Publications

Ontario Lepidoptera 2015 appeared in print in April 2016: the latest of our butterfly summaries; moths are also included in this latest version in the form of a short report by Chris Schmitt of Agriculture Canada on notable observations.

Many older TEA publications are now available for free download on our publications page. This includes all back issues of our annual seasonal summary (Ontario Lepidoptera), other than the two most recent issues -- over 2,000 pages of observations spanning more than 35 years. Copies of our newsletter (Ontario Insects) from 1994 to 2014 are also available.

Our Association

The Toronto Entomologists' Association (TEA) welcomes everyone who is interested in the insects of Ontario. We are an association of mostly amateur entomologists. Although our meetings are held in Toronto, we extend far beyond that in our field trips, our membership, and our seasonal summaries. Come to our meetings, join us on our field trips, purchase our publications, apply for the research grant, join us! The TEA is a registered charity and a non-profit educational and scientific organization formed to promote interest in insects, to encourage co-operation among amateur and professional entomologists, to educate and inform non-entomologists about insects, entomology and related fields, to aid in the preservation of insects and their habitats and to issue publications in support of these objectives.

Membership in the TEA

Anyone with an interest in insects is encouraged to join the Toronto Entomologists' Association. Please see our Membership Page for more details.

Did You Know?

TEA member Don Davis holds the Guiness Record for documenting the "longest migration of a butterfly." A monarch he tagged and released at Presqu'ile Provincial Park near Brighton, Ontario in September 1986 was recovered alive the following April at Austin, Texas, having spent the winter in Mexico at the overwintering sites.

Stay in Touch!

We can send you regular emails about coming activities -- join the list. You will be informed of meetings, insect counts, and field trips.