Meetings and Events

Spring 2018 Outing:

Our spring field trip will be Friday-Sunday, May 4-6, and features a “Bugs without Borders” theme.  We will start exploring the “central sands” of Jackson County, Wisconsin.  The next day will cross into Minnesota and explore the “blufflands” of Winona and Wabasha counties.  Our itinerary is below.

This trip will also highlight different sampling techniques including UV (ultraviolet) and MV (mercury vapor) sheets, UV traps, fermenting fruit baits, sweep netting, floral searches, and others.  If you have a sampling technique you would like to share, please do!

Please email Kyle ( if you might attend.  Plans are subject to change depending on weather conditions.  Final trip details will be coordinated by email, so remember to respond!

Friday, May 4 (Night): @ Oxbow Pond & Barrens, Jackson County, Wisconsin (44.37309°N  90.70382°W).  Habitats include dry jack pine-oak barrens/woodland, pond, and river course.  About 8.6 miles northeast of Black River Falls: go 7.4 miles EAST on WI-54, then 2.7 miles NORTH on Cemetery Road, then 0.7 miles WEST on Oxbow Road.  We’ll like be parked just off the paved road, on a sandy 2-track (not at the main parking area).

Saturday, May 5 (Day): begin near parking area noted above @9:00am.  Later in the morning or early afternoon we may drive to other locations.  This include, but are not limited to: Bauer-Brockway Barrens (44.29852°N  90.74881°W), Martin Marsh (44.34180°N  90.55624°W), and Lone Pine Road/Peatlands* (44.32670°N  90.44472°W).  These sites include a variety of habitats including jack pine-oak barrens, sedge meadows, acid peatlands, and mixed forests.  *The access road is very sandy and getting stuck might be an issue depending on conditions; I haven’t driven it recently.

Saturday, May 5 (Night): @ Weaver Dunes, Wabasha County, Minnesota (44.27774°N  91.94085°W).  Habitats include sand prairie, dunes, and various wetlands.  Parking is off Highway 84 (at GPS point above) or along the sandy 2-track to the south (44.27664°N  91.94410°W).

Sunday, May 6 (Day):  Begin near above parking areas @ Weaver Dunes around 9am.  Mid-day we will explore Whitewater WMA in Winona County.  Habitats include mixed hardwood forest, oak savanna, sand prairie, bluff prairie, floodplain wetlands, and river course.  We will explore the 2-track 0.3 miles EAST of the junction of highways 30 and 74 (44.14981°N  92.00220°W).  The gate is locked but I have a key, and will try to get permission for others to drive back if possible (to access the best sand prairie).  Otherwise park on the road shoulder (do not block gate).

Sunday, May 6 (Night): @ Whitewater WMA, near the above parking area or in sand prairie farther in (44.16358°N  91.99097°W).

Fall 2017 Meeting:

Join us on the UW-Madison campus on Saturday, November 4th for a day of insect fun and comradery!  Show up early (or stay late) to mingle with fellow insect enthusiasts or visit the collections.  The fall meeting will be held in Russell Labs Room 150 (1630 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53706).  Lunch will be provided around noon (Glass Nickel Pizza Co.), followed by our annual photo salon- you can enter up to five photos. After this will be “Tales from the Field” by WES members, which showcases interesting and unusual discoveries from the current field season. If you have something you’d like to share- even just a few brief words, pictures, or specimens- please do so! (email Kyle or PJ).

Directions can be accessed using the interactive map below, or are published below the map.  Parking is available behind Russell Labs in the Lot 36/Steenbock parking ramp off of Observatory Drive.  The gathering will run from 10 AM – 4PM.

A rough schedule can be found below:

Noon: Lunch (Glass Nickel Pizza)
1 PM: Annual photo salon contest (bring up to 5 photos on a flash drive or CD)
2 PM: “Tales from the Field”: a collection of short presentations and stories from WES members. Feel free to bring a presentation, a few brief words or pictures, or even specimens to share with the group.  If you have something you’d like to share- even just a few brief words, pictures, or specimens- please do so! (email Kyle or PJ)

If you have any questions about the fall meeting, feel free to email Kyle Johnson or PJ Liesch.


Directions/Parking: Russell Labs is located at 1630 Linden Drive, Madison, WI 53706. Free parking is located in the Steenbock Ramp behind Russell Labs (directly northwest).

Heading west-bound on University Avenue take the Babcock Drive exit (0.25 miles after the Charter Street intersection) and go straight through the stop sign (Linden Drive) and continue to next stop sign (Observatory Drive). Go left (west) 0.1 miles and turn left again (south) to enter the Steenbock Parking Ramp. Walk to the tall building directly to the southeast (Russell Labs) and look for signs.

Heading east-bound on University Avenue take the Old University Avenue exit (immediately after the University Bay Drive intersection). Continue 0.4 miles to Walnut Street; go left (north) for 0.3 miles to the round-about. Take the first right (east) off the round-about and continue just over 0.5 miles and turn right (south) to the Steenbock Parking Ramp. Walk to the tall building directly to the southeast (Russell Labs) and look for signs.

Summer 2017 Outing:

Join us at the Navarino State Wildlife Area (Shawano County) on Saturday, June 17 for a day (and night) of insect exploration and good company.  Navarino State Wildlife Area is located in Shawano County about 40 minutes north of Appleton, WI. The area features a wide range of habitats from dry oak-pine woodlands and sand blows to extensive wetlands, and mid-June we would expect a wealth of interesting insects and other wildlife. We will set up UV/MV lights and baits on Saturday night, and those interesting in camping may do so on site (let Kyle know as he will handle the special use permit). The nearest motels are located in Clintonville, Shawano, and New London.

We will initially meet at 9 AM in one of the parking areas on County Highway K 1.6 miles north of the junction with Highway WI-156 (44.65679°N 88.58124°W) and reconvene in the area late evening to set up for blacklighting. We will order pizza and wings for pick-up and bring to the site for lunch/dinner.

We may blacklight on Friday night as well, and have Sunday as an alternate day in case of poor weather. More details to come as the event gets closer, but be sure to mark your calendars now!

Looking for information about a previous meeting or outing?  Check out the Previous Events page.