The lowly ground beetle can tell us a lot about biodiversity and the effects of climate change in our neighborhoods and parks. Many species of ground beetle have extremely specific habitat requirements, and as a result, strikingly different communities of beetles occur separated by short distances. These bugs are easy to capture using simple pitfall traps, and relatively untrained observers can identify common local species. This makes ground beetles ideal subjects for citizen-science survey projects. At the Tuesday March 10th meeting of the Burke Mountain Naturalists, Dr. Rob McGregor will describe how he hopes to use public participation in his beetle research. The project aims to monitor ground beetles to discover what the make-up of their communities says about the health of our urban environment.
McGregor is the Director of the Institute of Urban Ecology at Douglas College where he researches not just urban insects, but also how citizen-science projects such as this can influence the public’s understanding of urban ecological issues. So, McGregor intends to study us, as we study beetles. Ground beetles are truly bugs with benefits!
PLEASE NOTE: This meeting is held on a Tuesday evening. Due to Lenten services held at King of Life Lutheran Church, we have to switch our club meetings this month and next month only to the Tuesday preceding our usual Thursday evening date.