Chula Vista Nature Center Arthropod Species List Introduction

The Bug Walk program at the Nature Center was initiated in 1990. The Walks last between 2 and 3 hours in the mornings at approximately 2 week intervals beginning in mid-May and ending in mid-September. Many of the walks were preceded by a preparation walk carried out on the previous day, usually in the late afternoon.

Most of the effort in the Bug Walks is concentrated on the open space along the railway tracks. For several years, the Walk cut through the fenced in area before reaching the Nature Center. More recently, the participants have take the bus into the Center. In both cases, a short exploration of Gunpowder Point west of the Center occurs. The preparatory walks took place in the open space along the railway tracks. On several occasions, these preparations included a walk on Gunpowder Point.

The Bug Walks operate a catch-and-release program. The Walks have concentrated on poking around in vegetation rather than disturbing the landscape by digging in the ground or turning over boards. In some of the preparatory walks photographs were taken but again the emphasis in these walks was on the vegetation. In some cases dead bugs were been picked up for subsequent use in the Walks.

The arthropod species found on the grounds near the Nature Center have been identified visually using the pictures and descriptions listed in the various guide books listed below. I have used the common names in these books because of the possibility that two or more species may be very similar but only one is reported in the guide. In no cases have individuals been compared with reference material that might be contained in an entomological collection such as that at the San Diego Natural History Museum.

Some of the species indicated in the following were only found on one occasion. It is clear that many species have been missed (due to the sampling method and the region sampled). I have prepared two lists. One list contains all the arthropods I have been able to identify with reasonable certainty. The other contains the arthropods that are regularly found on the Walks.

Primary References:

  1. Insects of the Los Angeles Basin (LAB) - Charles Hogue, 1993
  2. California Insects (CI) - Jerry Powell and Charles Hogue, 1979
  3. Insects of Western North America (IWNA) - E. Essig, 1926
  4. California Butterflies (CB) - John Garth and J. Tilden, 1986
  5. Spiders and Their Kin (SK) - Herbert and Lorna Levi, 1987 (Golden Guide)
  6. Field Guide to North American Insects and Spiders (I&S) - Lorus and Magery Milne, 1984 (Audubon Society)
  7. Insects (SS) - Ross Arnett & Richard Jacques, 1981 (Simon and Schuster's)