Newsletter of the Biological Survey of Canada (Terrestrial Arthropods)

Volume 19 No. 2, Fall 2000


The Website of the Biological Survey of Canada (Terrestrial Arthropods)


General information and editorial notes

News and Notes
Grasslands conference at 2000 meeting
Survey’s website expanding
Biodiversity brief published
Spider newsletter published
New cone and seed insect web site
Nature Discovery Fund makes first award
Summary of the Scientific Committee meeting
Members of the Scientific Committee

Comments on Error Rates in Insect Identifications

Project Update: Insects of Keewatin and Mackenzie

The Website of the Biological Survey

The Quiz Page

Selected Publications

Selected Future Conferences

Quips and Quotes

Requests for Material or Information Invited

Request for Cooperation (form)


The Biological’s Survey’s main roles (to act as a coordinating office for information, coordinate scientific work to foster active research projects and produce synthetic publications, and to address matters of general concern to biologists) are being enhanced with expansion of the Survey’s website, an expansion which will soon be fully implemented.

The Biological Survey has had a presence on the web since 1997. Last year a subcommittee of the Survey’s advisory Scientific Committee recommended that the site be expanded to make more faunal content available and to increase the profile of the Survey and its projects. With the assistance of Agnes Bonk, an intern hired through the Youth International Internship Program, a redesign and expansion was undertaken late in 1999. The Survey is pleased to announce the launch of our new and improved website.

In addition to a new look the site now contains more specific content. For example most of the Survey’s briefs are now available online in both Adobe Acrobat (PDF) and web page formats. Some larger publications are also available electronically. Insect Dormancy: An Ecological Perspective (H.V. Danks, 1987) has been out of print for some time but the full text is available now on the website. Insects of the Yukon has also been posted. Users can view or download the complete text or individual chapters. Most of the publications that are available as Acrobat files have the added benefit of being searchable.

An objective of the site is to promote key projects of the Survey. The Survey’s currently developing major project on the arthropods of Canadian grasslands is featured in a section of the site that has a description of the project, information on the upcoming informal conference, and the text for all of the grasslands newsletters. More information will be added as the project progresses.

A fledgling project on faunal analysis aims to compile accurate and authoritative, up-to-date, information on the diversity of Canada’s terrestrial arthropod fauna. Such data will allow the Biological Survey of Canada and others to demonstrate needs related to faunal studies, especially the need for more positions in systematics. It is hoped that posting of existing data will be an incentive for experts to update the older estimates of Canadian diversity.

To promote coordination and cooperation among Canadian entomologists the Survey has long published an Annotated List of Workers on Systematics and Faunistics of Canadian Insects and Certain Related Groups. In the near future this information will be part of the site in the form of a searchable database. Users will be able to search by name (of people), taxon, ecological group or city of interest. Search results will show name and contact information of relevant entomologists as well as their detailed interests and current projects. An online form is available for additions and updates. This database is kept up to date by the Survey Secretariat and it is hoped that having the information on the web will facilitate access to the database as well as encourage entomologists to submit revised information.

Navigation of the Survey’s new site has been made easier with the addition of a site map and a search feature. The website is at Suggestions for improvements or additions are always welcome. Thanks go to the Entomological Society of Canada (and webmaster Barry Lyons) and the University of Alberta for hosting our site.

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