Oct 152016

Connecticut Butterfly Association Fall Meeting



  • Saturday, October 22, 2016, 1:00-3:00 PM
  • Whitney Center, 200 Leeder Hill Drive, Hamden, CT 06517-2749

Speaker: Rick Cech

Many of our rarest and most sought-after butterfly species rely for their survival on specialized and unusual habitats—along with a host of other valuable “habitat obligate” organisms, many of which are threatened or endangered. An array of rich and unique habitats can be found along the East Coast, often in little-known niches. Come see butterfly naturalist and writer Rick Cech describe the intriguing ecological forces that shape these exotic communities, where many of our most exotic butterflies dwell.
An active field naturalist since childhood, also now a natural history author and photographer, Rick Cech is an affiliate curator at the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History in Entomology. He is the principal author and photographer of Butterflies of the East Coast: An Observer’s Guide (Princeton, 2005), and wrote “A Distributional Checklist of the Butterflies and Skippers of the New York City Area.” Rick co-authored the National Audubon Society Regional Guide to Florida. His recent works include editing and photography for the iApp “Audubon Butterflies – A Field Guide to North American Butterflies,” and development of the FoldingGuides regional butterfly series.
A life-long field observer, explorer and trip leader, Rick brings innovative perspectives to the study and appreciation of natural history. He played a formative role in originating the Sibley Guide series, as well as the National Audubon Society Interactive CD-ROM Guide to North American Birds. Rick’s photography is widely published, in articles and books (including more than 950 in both Butterflies of the East Coast and Audubon Butterflies) as well as in photo exhibits and displays. He has led nature trips since the early 1980s, and makes regular presentations to natural history and botanical organizations across the country.
Directions: From New Haven, take Whitney Avenue north approximately four miles and turn left on Putnam Avenue. Go approximately 0.7 miles and turn right on Leeder Hill Drive. Whitney Center is at 200 Leeder Hill Drive. From New Haven or Hartford via I-91, take Exit 6 to Middletown Avenue heading north. Turn left at Edwards Street or Willow Street. Turn right at Whitney Avenue, left on Putnam, then right on Leeder Hill as described above.
Sep 122014

This year, international rock flipping day (started in 2007) is September 14th. But you can celebrate every day!

“The point is simply to have fun, and hopefully learn something at the same time. We don’t want to over-determine what that something should be: those of a more scientific frame of mind might focus on IDs or ecological interactions, while those of an artistic or poetic bent could go in a different direction entirely…

Whatever you do, please be sure to replace all rocks that you flip as soon as possible, so as not to disrupt the natives’ lives unduly.”


See this post by Gwen Pearson to learn more. She blogs at Wired.com, with her column “Charismatic Minifauna”. She is a wonderfully witty entomologist, I highly recommend following her pieces.

Sep 112014

The Connecticut State Museum of Natural History is offering a variety of outreach programs this fall, one of which is on using stream insects to evaluate water quality. It sounds like a fun event for adults and children alike, see their website for more details!

Paula Coughlin, Science Educator
Saturday, September 27, 10 am to 12 noon
Pomfret, CT (directions will be sent to participants)
Advance registration required: $15 ($10 for Museum members)
Adults and children ages 5 and above. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

Connecticut’s streams play an important role in maintaining a healthy environment. While they may appear to be crystal clear, the water quality in some streams can be questionable. The presence of certain aquatic insects can be indicators of water quality as some types of aquatic life are more sensitive to pollutants than others. Join naturalist and science educator Paula Coughlin and explore a small stream to learn about a community of aquatic insects that are water quality indicators. Bring appropriate footwear for moderate hiking and boots or old sneakers that can get wet. Dress for mucking about in the stream. Special nets and waders will be provided during this family friendly activity.

Registration form can be found here.