Interpretive Biologist Chris Earley speaking at the University of Guelph Arbouretum

What a perfect day to be a naturalist!

Today we took advantage of the gorgeous weather on our hike with Chris Earley at the University of Guelph Arbouretum.

Armed with our nets and peanutbutter jars, our team forged the forest looking for insects to identify.


We discovered many species of insects including spiders, moths, beetles, and two different dragonfly varieties: White Face Meadow Hawk and the Autumn Meadow Hawk. Earley explained the difference between dragon flies and damsel flies, which are often mistaken for each other. We identified a spotted spread wing damsel fly with cobalt blue eyes.


Andrea analyzing a male Autumn Meadow Hawk

Earley emphasized the importance of working with art and science in unison, to better understand and appreciate the natural world around us.

Other interesting things we learned today with Earley:

  • How to hold a frog
  • How a wood frog hibernates in the winter
  • How dragonflies mate
  • How to use a “Beat Sheet” to capture insects from trees
  • How to carefully handle insects with a net
  • The natural order of the arboretum

Here you can watch our hilarious attempt to make bird calls with our hands!

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