Wasp larvae, uneaten aphid prey, and larva of a chrysidid parasitoid in the nest of a solitary wasp in a bramble stem.

Continuing with the posting of Hugh Danks’ series “Wider aspects of a career in Entomology”, this post presents 3 more installments.

“This series of articles outlines some ancillary aspects of my entomological career, for the potential amusement of readers.

11. An amateur in France

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 12. Graduate studies in England

13. Graduate studies in England, continued

Chalkhill blue butterfly, a species restricted to chalk and limestone grassland.

Continuing with the posting of Hugh Danks’ series “Wider aspects of a career in Entomology”, we bring you the next 3 installments.

“This series of articles outlines some ancillary aspects of my entomological career, for the potential amusement of readers.”

8. The bug book and bug bottle

9. An interest in entomology

10. Undergraduate activities

The Entomological Society of Canada is looking for a member willing to serve in the position of Co-Secretary, starting in October 2023. The ESC’s two Co-Secretaries share the secretarial duties in support of the President and Board of Directors by:

  • Scheduling meetings of the Executive Council, Board, and the Members, preparing agendas, obtaining reports from Officers and others, sending out notices of meetings, attending the meetings, and recording minutes.
  • Working with our Association Management Company (Strauss event & association
  • management) to ensure that records of Society activities such as agendas, minutes, reports, and correspondence are preserved, and to prepare the Society’s annual filings with Corporations Canada and other government agencies.
  • Providing information on Society business to the Bulletin Editor, Webmaster, and Strauss for publication, posting, and circulation to the membership as necessary.
  • Maintaining up-to-date lists and contact information for the Society’s Board and Committees.
  • Overseeing plebiscites to recommend candidates for nominations as Societal Director and Director-at-Large, and for any other questions on which votes may be required, and notifying of the results of voting. Advising affiliated societies when they need to provide names for nominations as Regional Directors.

A familiarity with the Society’s by-laws, rules, and guidelines, past experience as a Board member, and the ability to work in French and English would all be assets. This is a great opportunity to serve one of the oldest biological societies in North America and to deepen your contacts with the Canadian entomological community. Any member interested in serving in this position may contact either of the current Co-Secretaries, Erin Campbell (Erin.Campbell@inspection.gc.ca) or Neil Holliday (Neil_Holliday@UManitoba.ca) for further information. Erin will be continuing in her position, and Neil will be stepping down. Applications should be made to the President, Chris MacQuarrie (cjkmacquarrie@gmail.com), by 31 July 2023. The final selection will be made by an ad hoc committee convened by the President.

Larva of the tobacco budworm, a common host of the tachinid parasitoids that were studied. Length about 3 cm. (Whitney Cranshaw, Colorado State University / © Bugwood.org.)

Continuing with the posting of Hugh Danks’ series “Wider aspects of a career in Entomology”, we bring you the next three installments.

“This series of articles outlines some ancillary aspects of my entomological
career, for the potential amusement of readers.”

  1. Spring to fall research in Canada

H. Ryan (USFWS)

  1. North Carolina

Adult tachinid of the genus Winthemia, similar to the species studied. Length about 0.8 cm. Insektarium.net

  1. Belize

Bandwagonman (CC BY-SA-3.0,2.5,2.0,1.0)

Author Hugh Danks onBathurst Island in July 1969.

Author Hugh Danks on Bathurst Island in July 1969.

We will be reissuing this series by Hugh Danks, first published in the Bulletin of the Entomological Society of Canada, so that readers can get caught up with the series, before newer articles are published. The older articles will be published in blocks, so that they can be downloaded and read,

1. Winter in Canada

2. A winter project

3. The high Arctic

4. The high Arctic, continued

Deadline extended!
Posting for a tenured or tenure-track position at the Associate or Full Professor level for the Cameron Chair in Ecological Pest Management  in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of Guelph.
Deadline for applications: 15 June 2023.
Please see the posting here.
Members are encouraged to complete this poll from the International Congress of Entomology Council regarding the timing of the 2032 ICE.
This link has been verified as legitimate by ESC Executive members.
A researcher assists a documentary crew filming spiders on a beach in BC. The researcher is sitting down with three documentarians, while a camera operator films.

Catherine Scott assisting a documentary crew with filming black widows at Island View Beach in BC.

An upcoming “Nature of Things” documentary on CBC will feature several prominent Canadian entomologists/arachnologists talking about mating and courtship of various arthropods.  Maydianne Andrade, Andrew Mason, and Luciana Baruffaldi from UTSC, Catherine Scott from McGill, Darryl Gwynne from UTM are among the scientists featured in the documentary. Below is the press release.  Check it out March 10!

Carrion beetles mating on the ground.

Some mating carrion beetles (not featured in the documentary)

 

CHECK OUT THE INTIMATE LIVES OF INSECTS IN BUG SEX PREMIERING FRIDAY, MARCH 10 ON THE NATURE OF THINGS

There are 10 quintillion of them on this planet and their numbers keep growing so they must be up to something, right? They are. But how do bugs actually mate?  In this new documentary filmmakers use cutting-edge camera technology –and a healthy sense of humour–to take viewers into the little-known and rarely seen world of insect sexual activity.  What the bugs do is surprising, sometimes borderline tender or even shockingly brutal.  Bug Sex premieres on The Nature of Things, Friday, March 10 at 9 p.m. (9:30 NT) on CBC and the free CBC Gem streaming service.

Why should the sex lives of bugs interest us?  “If human beings ceased to exist, the planet would continue just fine,” explains Andrew Gregg, who made Bug Sex.  “But eliminate all the insects and arachnids and the world’s ecology would collapse.”  He notes that seeing how insects breed and go to incredible lengths to ensure their genes carry on is a window into how evolution works.

With intriguing visuals, Bug Sex looks how a wide variety of spiders, crickets and flies breed, everything from black widow spiders to Pacific field crickets.  Viewers will be astonished at the mating habits of fruit flies and at what the male black widow spider sacrifices for the sake of a sexual union.  Then there is the kinky behavior of the wolf spider with its sexual cannibalism and just wait until you see the courting technique of dance flies!   “Looking at the bug world is like stepping into an alternate reality that exists all around us,” Gregg notes.

To guide viewers into this world, Gregg assembled a number of insect biologists, and he feels that today with more women scientists in the field there is a greater understanding of the female half of the insect population.  He points out that many bug scientists are actually partnered couples who share a mutual interest.  Like Maydianne Andrade and husband Andrew Mason from the University of Toronto who we join as they observe monster haglids in Alberta.  “We are both interested in the libido of bugs,” Dr Andrade explains.

 Joining them in this documentary are Marlene Zuk and her husband John Rotenberry as they seek field crickets in Hawaii, and on Vancouver Island we find Catherine Scott and partner Sean McCann looking out for black widow spiders.  Bug Sex even ventures to Uruguay where solo scientist Anita Aisenberg explores the unconventional mating rituals of wolf spiders.

Darryl Gwynn explores the machinations of tree cricket courting and then the intricacies of how they actually get it together.  “Insects are so diverse,” he says.  “And as the years go by they are coming up with more and more novel systems—new insect systems that do bizarrely different things.”  But is it possible that insects derive any pleasure during their couplings?  Dr. Lisha Shao at the University of Delaware provides evidence that the lively and intoxicated fruit fly is actually having a good time.

Bug Sex is a unique opportunity to glimpse into the fascinating and hidden world of the tiny creatures that are all around us.  It is an invitation to be a bug voyeur!

                                                                      *****************

Bug Sex is written and directed by Andrew Gregg and co-produced with Deborah Parks.  It is made by Red Trillium Films in association with CBC.

For CBC: Sally Catto is General Manager, Entertainment, Scripted, and Sport; Jennifer Dettman is Executive Director, Unscripted Content; Sandra Kleinfeld is Senior Director, Documentaries; Sue Dando & Lesley Birchard, Executives in Charge of Production.

MEDIA CONTACT:  David McCaughna   davidmcc2@gmail.com   416-859-1004

The 10th International Congress of Dipterology (ICDX) is being held July 16-21 2023 in Reno, Nevada. Travel grants from the North American Dipterists Society, the Linnaean Society of London, and the Entomological Society of Canada have been made available to support student attendance. Funding from the Entomological Society of Canada will go specifically towards supporting Canadian students.

To apply, please visit https://dipterists.org/grants_awards.html and click on the Travel Grants tab.

The deadline to apply is March. 15th