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Peoria approximella (a moth named in New York for Peoria, IL). Photo of Michigan specimen courtesy Jim Vargo (used with permission).

May 17th, 2017

Merwin Nature Preserve

Our group visited Merwin Nature Preserve on May 13, 2017. Many others were present as the group responsible for the upkeep of the reserve was holding a celebration of their 50th anniversary. Here is a video synopsis of our trip. We hope you will be able to participate in our June excursion.

Merwin Nature Preserve from Mark DuBois on Vimeo.

I also took a few 360 degree photos with my Ricoh Theta camera. I thought you might enjoy seeing these as well.

Merwin Nature Preserve (near Bloomington, IL) with Mackinaw River in background. #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

Along the banks of the Mackinaw River at Merwin Nature Preserve (near Bloomington, IL). #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

April 26th, 2017

April 29th field trip cancelled

We cancelled our April 29 field trip. There appears to be too much rain in the forecast.

You are encouraged to participate in Mark DuBois’ presentation on the evolution of insects on April 30 at the Peoria Riverfront Museum (2 – 3 p.m.). Note there is a typo on the link; it really is Sunday, April 30 at 2 p.m.

March 20th, 2017

Funk’s Mineral Museum

We toured the Funk’s Mineral Museum (near Bloomington, IL) on March 18, 2017. This museum has a large collection of minerals, fossils (and so much more). We also visited a maple sirup store (sirup is spelled correctly as it contains only boiled tree sap; syrup also contains corn syrup) and the Sugar Grove Nature Center. Here is a brief video summary of our experiences at the mineral museum.

Funks Mineral Museum from Mark DuBois on Vimeo.

I also took along my Ricoh Theta 360 camera and generated a number of 360 degree photos. Some are linked below.

This is a view of the outside of the museum (along with Mark DuBois and Bill Case).

Entrance to Funk’s mineral museum near Bloomington, IL. Tons of North Carolina stones in exterior. #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

Here is the interior. Mr. Funk glued these slabs to old windows. The lights behind allow you to see the minerals in detail.

Entrance to Funk’s Mineral Museum. #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

This room contains a number of interesting fossils from various localities around the world.

Room of fossils at Funk’s Mineral Museum. #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

This overview of the main mineral room should give you an idea of the size of the museum. There are many specimens on display throughout.

Mineral room at Funk’s Mineral Museum #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

As you walk through the aisles of the museum, you can see many of the specimens up close.

Mineral collection at Funk’sMineral Museum. #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

There are also a number of antiques (such as these buggys and sleighs and saddles).

Assorted artifacts at Funk’s Mineral Museum. #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

We hope you will be able to join us on our next trip (April 29, 2017).

February 18th, 2017

Cold Adapted Insects

I decided to make a separate recording of the presentation I gave to our group on Feb. 18, 2017. This is a slightly shorter version.

Cold Adapted Insects from Mark DuBois on Vimeo.

Please use the comments section if you have questions about this presentation.

January 29th, 2017

2017 Meetings

We met in January and established the our tentative event schedule for 2017. These are listed below. All events start on Saturday at 9 a.m. unless otherwise noted. We welcome new members and look forward to meeting you at these events.

November 20th, 2016

November, 2016 meeting

We met at the home of Frank Hitchell on November 19, 2016 for our final meeting of the year. We had a “show and tell” session where members brought photos and specimens to discuss. Here is a quick video overview.

November, 2016 Entomology meeting from Mark DuBois on Vimeo.

We will update our website in January with a list of activities planned for 2017. We hope you will be able to join us.

October 15th, 2016

October, 2016 Field Trip

We visited Singing Woods in Peoria Co., Illinois for our field trip on October 15, 2016. This video covers some of the highlights of our “walk in the woods.”

Singing Woods from Mark DuBois on Vimeo.

For another view of the trip, here are some 360 degree views I took with my Theta 360 camera today as well. Hope you enjoy these.

View from stream at Singing Woods, Peoria Co., Illinois #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

Central Illinois entomologists at Singing Woods, Peoria Co., Illinois #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

Central Illinois entomology group visited Singing Woods. Impressive fungus. #theta360 – Spherical Image – RICOH THETA

We hope to see you next month.

September 18th, 2016

September 17, 2016 Picnic

We held our annual picnic at Jubilee State Park (west of Peoria, Illinois) on September 17, 2016. We had many great conversations. Here is a quick video overview of our experiences.

Entomology Picnic September 17, 2016 from Mark DuBois on Vimeo.

We hope you can participate in our next field trip – October 15, 2016 – to Singing Woods.

July 16th, 2016

July 16, 2016 field trip

For our July field trip, we visited Jubilee State Park (Illinois) on July 16, 2016. We toured the replanted prairie near the Red Fox Run picnic grounds. Here is a quick video summary of our tour.

Jubilee State Park July 2016 from Mark DuBois on Vimeo.

We hope you will be able to join us for our August trip to Merwin Nature Preserve.

June 18th, 2016

June 18, 2016 field trip

We visited the Sand Ridge State Forest near Manito, IL for our June field trip. In past years, we have observed a number of interesting species in this area. The observed fauna was a bit different this year. We thought we would share some of our observations. The following video is a quick overview.

Sand Ridge Field Trip from Mark DuBois on Vimeo.

As always, we look forward to your comments and hope you can join us on our next excursion.


Our main goal is to encourage participation in the study and appreciation of the insect world around us. this is accomplished through field trips, educational programs, sharing experiences, and insect photography or collecting.