Insects and Arachnids of High Park

Like birds and small mammals, the diversity of insects and arachnids (spiders) reflects High Park’s varied habitats which include gardens, savannahs, forests and wetlands. However, unlike their feathered and furry cousins, these tiny creatures have received much less attention.

One insect order that has been observed more carefully is Lepidoptera, with spectacular results — at least 70 species of butterflies and over 900 species of moths have been recorded in recent years. Observers of Odonates have recorded 52 species of dragonflies and damselflies, and bee researchers have found 5 species of bumblebee as well as many native solitary bees that nest in sandy soils or hollow twigs. Even an obscure rare beetle has been found in the rotting stump of an oak. What else may yet be discovered with further investigation?


To see more insects of High Park, visit the High Park Nature Centre iNaturalist Project. For more information and links to other insect websites, visit the website of the Toronto Entomologists' Association (TEA).

Butterflies and moths are in the order Lepidoptera. These are the familiar beautiful insects that we readily welcome to our gardens. Besides being beautiful to look at, some are also important pollinators.

Cecropia Moth, Hyalophora cecropia. Photo: JM
Cecropia Moth, Hyalophora cecropia. Photo: JM

You May Spot

  • Bees
  • Wasps
  • Butterflies
  • Moths
  • Dragonflies
  • Damselflies
  • Cicadas
  • And many others...
Halloween Pennant. Photo: Karen Yukich
Halloween Pennant. Photo: Karen Yukich

Insect Galleries

Biodiversity Booklet Series

Includes: Birds, Butterflies, Spiders, Fishes, Mammals, Bees, Reptiles and Amphibians, Mushrooms, and Trees, Shrubs and Vines of Toronto. Free copies may be available at your local Toronto Public Library branch. To find out more about these free guidebooks or to download a pdf version, visit the City of Toronto's Biodiversity website.

Articles, Galleries and Guides

What's New?

Welcome to Our New Website!

By High Park Nature | September 14, 2020
Since the High Park Nature website was first launched in 2010, it has provided a wealth of information about the natural features of High Park. Now we are pleased to…

New Treatment for Buckthorn

By High Park Nature | July 9, 2020
This summer Urban Forestry is partnering in a demonstration trial with BioForest, a forest pest management company, to manage invasive buckthorn shrubs using the bioherbicide Chontrol Peat Paste. The active…

Toronto Star article, January 13, 2020

By High Park Nature | April 5, 2020
“We love High Park for its natural beauty. Will that love be the death of it?” Read the article or The Star Pressreader version

High Park Christmas Bird Count Results

By High Park Nature | December 27, 2019
The most recent High Park Christmas Bird Count was held on Sunday, Dec. 15, 2019 (a very windy day). The High Park route ended up with 43 species, our lowest since…

High Park Stewards Summary 2019

By High Park Nature | December 1, 2019
There were over 280 participants (between 110 individuals coming at least once) who came out to High Park Stewards field restoration events. The average number of Stewards that attended each…








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Wetland Plants

Invasive Plants