What is the guide?
The guide is a collection of guide pages providing information about insects, spiders, and other related arthropods. Information provided includes natural history, images, links to other web sites of interest, and references to useful books.
How is the guide structured?
Structured as a tree based on taxonomy, the guide branches out starting with arthropods. When browsing, each guide page shows other guide pages nested directly below it in the tree. By browsing deeper in the tree, you will find increasingly more specific information.
What are the sections of a guide page?
Each guide page includes five sections, identified by clickable tabs at the top of the page: browse, info, images, links, and books.
The browse tab provides a synopsis of each guide page nested below the current guide page. The synopsis includes a sampling of representative images in that part of the tree and links to the guide page sections. Only guide pages nested directly below the current guide page will be shown in the browse section.
The info tab provides natural history information. Many sections may be sparse initially, but will gradually fill in as contributors do research and add material. At a minimum you will see some representative photos and classification. You may also see common names, number of families and species, a physical description, typical sizes, range, habitat, season, food, life cycle, and general remarks.
The images tab shows all images available for that guide page and all guide pages nested below it, regardless of depth in the tree, organized by guide page. This provides a quick way to inspect all photos available for a particular branch of the guide.
The links tab summarizes all links available for the current guide page, every guide page along the branch that led to it, and all those nested below it.
Similarly, the books tab summarizes all books.
How do I use the guide?
If you are looking for information on a particular bug, start browsing at the top of the tree, and continue browsing by selecting the guide page with images that most closely resemble what you're looking for. Alternatively, select an image from the clickable guide on the lefthand side of each page on this web site to quickly get to a particular branch in the guide tree and then go from there.
Don't be surprised if you do not find exactly what you're looking for. There are just too many bugs! You may have to settle for information on something that's closely related.
If you don't find what you're looking for, and you have a good image of it, please consider registering and submitting the image in the ID Request section of this web site. Someone may be able to identify it and we might even add a guide page with your photo so that others will find it next time.
Can I contribute to the guide?
Absolutely! After registering, you are welcome to suggest improvements to the guide in the Guide Page Improvements forum. You may also comment on images, links, and books. Your comments requesting information will help us to concentrate our efforts on things that other people may be looking for. Your personal observations or knowledge in a particular area may also benefit future visitors.
You may even add your own images, links, and books. If your contribution benefits from a new guide page, we will create one and move your contributed content to it.
If we notice over time that your contributions consistently demonstrate reasonable care in research and identification, we may invite you to play a bigger role and become a contributing editor. Then you'll be able to create your own guide pages and help us out with maintaining the guide.