Identification, Images, & Information
For Insects, Spiders & Their Kin
For the United States & Canada
Cimbex americana - Cimbex americanus - female

Cimbex americana - Cimbex americanus - Female
Edgewater, East Kootenays, British Columbia, Canada
June 30, 2011
seen in garden area, mid-afternoon. Has a mite on its back.

Hi, I am a professor in th

I am a professor in the Biology Dept. at Western Washington University, in Bellingham, WA. For the last decade or so, I've been working on a field guide to Pacific Northwest insects (southern BC, WA, OR, ID, northern CA, western MT), to be published by Seattle Audubon Society. The guide will feature species accounts of nearly 1,200 species, each with a description of its natural history, how to distinguish it from similar species, and a photograph of a live adult. The featured species represent the great majority of insects that people in the region are likely to notice, along with a broad sampling of general insect diversity, including species of conservation need, pest species, and species that are good examples of the variety of insect form and function that can be found in the region. I'm writing the field guide in a style that will make it useful to a wide range of people: teachers and their students, field biologists, gardeners, foresters, farmers, homeowners, conservation managers, and curious naturalists in general. One of the things that makes this guide unique is that the species accounts are sufficiently detailed in the great majority of cases to allow accurate species-level identification. Gathering all of this information is the main reason why this project has taken so long! I'm finally seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, in that I now have drafts of the species accounts, as well as the family and order introductions. I still have a number of loose ends to tend to, but am planning on having it sent off to the printers in time for a spring 2015 release.

One of the loose ends in the project is finishing up with obtaining the necessary photographs. I've spent considerable time in the field taking photographs of insects, and about half of the images in this field guide will be my own. The remainder of the photographs are being donated by a large number of insect photographers, most of whom I've contacted after seeing their images on BugGuide, as well as others with photostreams on sites such as Flickr. However, I still have a few holes to fill in the photos I would like to include in the guide. I'm hoping you'd be willing to donate this image for use in the field guide. You would be acknowledged in the field guide for the donated photographs (your name would appear next to the photo), and you would retain the copyrights to the photograph. Unfortunately, because Seattle Audubon Society is a non-profit organization, they're producing the guide on a shoestring budget, and cannot pay photographers for images. Proceeds from the field guide will be used for Seattle Audubon conservation and environmental education efforts. If you'd be willing to donate this image to the cause, please contact me at

-Merrill Peterson

Moved from ID Request.