130/150: They may not have wings, but boy can they jump!

Animalia: Arthropoda: Insecta: Archaeognatha: Machilidae: Petrobiinae: Pedetontus: Pedetontus submutans (Silvestri, 1911)

The jumping bristletails belong to the order Archaeognatha. These small insects exhibit three pronged tails, an arched back, and two compound eyes. Its body is covered in detached scales making it very hard for predators to grip. Living in diverse habitats from moist shorelines to dry deserts, the jumping bristletails are well adapted for many environments having evolved eversible moisture absorbing vesicles. They are known for their quick movements and ability to jump over 25 cm at a time. These fast moving hexapods don’t even have to meet their mates. Instead the males leave their spermatophore out in the open, attaching silken threads for the females to find and follow. #Canada150 #Biodiversity150

Specimen 10BBSIO-0199 – Willowbrae Trail, Pacific Rim NP, British Columbia – 03-Jul-2010 -Free Hand. Photo Credit: CBG Photography Group, Centre for Biodiversity Genomics
Jumping Bristletail, Pedetontus submutans, on the tip of an index finger. Photo Credit: Keith Roragen goo.gl/cG9aDB
Jumping Bristletail, Pedetontus submutans, in a mossy forest environment. Photo Credit: Shipher Wu goo.gl/fqEvSF

Here’s the barcode sequence information for this species:

Process ID: SIOCA199-10

nucleotide sequence


amino acid sequence


Visual representation of DNA barcode sequence for Jumping bristletail

Learn more about it’s BIN (Barcode Index Number): BOLD:AAV1528




127/150: Happy Halloween! The Masked Hunter wears a costume of disguise!

Animalia: Arthropoda: Insecta: Hemiptera: Reduviidae: Reduviinae: Reduvius: Reduvius personatus (Linnaeus, 1758)

The Masked Hunter is a true bug belonging to the family Reduviidae, also known as the Assassin Bugs. In accordance to their dangerous sounding common name they are known to have a painful bite, but they are relatively harmless towards humans as they don’t feed on blood or transmit diseases. The nymphs of this species are very interesting because they exude a sticky substance from “head to toe” allowing them to collect dust, lint and other particles. This natural camouflage enables them to ambush their unsuspecting prey. The next time you see a dust bunny floating around your house take a closer look as it may be a Masked Hunter in disguise! #Canada150 #Biodiversity150 #Halloween

Specimen CNC#HEM300372 – Osoyoos, British Columbia – 20-Jun-2005. Photo Credit: CNC/BIO Photography Group, Centre for Biodiversity Genomics
A Masked Hunter nymph covered in sand as its costume for Halloween! Photo Credit: Chiswick Chap goo.gl/6FKrhN
Close-up view of the Masked Hunters piercing mouthparts. Photo Credit: Thomas Pieper goo.gl/H5PXkw

Here’s the barcode sequence information for this species:

Process ID: HMCN586-09

nucleotide sequence


amino acid sequence


Visual representation of DNA barcode sequence for Masked Hunter Bug

Learn more about it’s BIN (Barcode Index Number): BOLD:AAH2979

123/150: The European earwig may be a pest to us, but at least they have good mothers

Animalia: Arthropoda: Insecta: Dermaptera: Forficulidae: Forficula auricularia (Linnaeus, 1758)

The European earwig is an introduced species, as you may have guessed from its common name. This insect is known as a household pest and with omnivorous eating habits can either be found eating your grains & vegetables, or other smaller insect pests. Despite popular stories, earwigs do not crawl into your ears while you sleep, and they don’t bore into your brain as thought by many people. Unlike most insects, European earwigs display parental care. Once the females lay eggs, they place all of them in a hole and stand over it, protecting them from predators. Females also monitor mold growth and move the eggs around in the hole. Females are known to produce two broods of eggs, the first typically is around 30 to 60 eggs, with the second being around half of that or less. Eggs laid in colder weather typically take around 70 days to hatch, while ones in warmer weather only take around 20 days. #Canada150 #Biodiversity150

Specimen BIOUG00571-G01 – Point Pelee National Park, Ontario – Malaise Trap. Photo Credit: CBG Photography Group, Centre for Biodiversity Genomics
A female European Earwig guarding her young. Photo Credit: Nabokov goo.gl/s3vioD
A European Earwig residing on a leaf. Photo Credit: Judy Gallagher goo.gl/vC13rQ

Here’s the barcode sequence information for this species:

Process ID: SIOCN019-10

nucleotide sequence


amino acid sequence


Visual representation of DNA barcode sequence for Earwig

Learn more about it’s BIN (Barcode Index Number): BOLD:AAG9897

100/150: Phasmids, the masters of disguise!

Animalia: Arthropoda: Insecta: Phasmatodea: Diapheromeridae: Diapheromerinae: Diapheromera: Diapheromera femorata (Say, 1824)

The common walking stick (Diapheromera femorata) is the only species walking stick found in Canada.  Phasmids are excellent at camouflage and are commonly mistaken for twigs and leaves, accomplishing this feat by body modifications that resemble leaf veins and bark like tubercles. Phasmids will also sway back in forth, resembling leaves in the wind. Continue reading “100/150: Phasmids, the masters of disguise!”

72/150: Not as ‘Lousey’ as you may think!

Animalia: Arthropoda: Insecta: Psocodea: Psocidae: Psocinae: Metylophorus: Metylophorus novaescotiae (Walker, 1853)

Meet the June barklouse. Don’t worry, I know what you’re thinking, but despite the name these small soft-bodied insects are not parasitic like most lice. Within Psocodea, the members that are found on trees are referred to as barklice. Continue reading “72/150: Not as ‘Lousey’ as you may think!”

50/150 A damsel in distress? Think again!

animalia: Arthropoda: Insecta: Odonata: Coenagrionidae: Enallagma: Enallagma antennatum (Say, 1839)

Have you ever wondered what the difference between a dragonfly and a damselfly was? Well you’ve come to the right place! First things first, both dragons and damsels make up an ancient order of insects called Odonata. They originated at least 300 million years ago and have changed very little in body design since then. Continue reading “50/150 A damsel in distress? Think again!”

A Great Start To The Summer

Hello everyone!

My name is Dan Engelking, and I am currently working in Collections as a Collections Technician for BIO this summer. I would like to officially welcome you to my portion of the blog! Continue reading “A Great Start To The Summer”

Insects Galore

Hi everybody, I’m Kylee and I work in the archives in the collections department. I’ve been with BIO since September 2013 and worked in collections for a year previous to moving to the archive in the summer of 2014. I love working with BIO and I’m really looking forward to completing some field work this summer on the BIObus. Continue reading “Insects Galore”