Site Shows Latest Buzz about Insects, Spiders

Article excerpt

Summertime means two things: bugs (such as the 17-year locusts or cicadas, which are not actually locusts but are related more directly to the aphid order homoptera) in my hair and hiding indoors from the scorching heat.

In preparation for an eventual return to enjoying the outdoors and handling school-year research projects, children and adults can spend time together honing their World Wide Web research skills while learning.

The best way to acquaint yourself with the variety of information found within Web sites is to pick a topic, in this instance entomology - the study of insects - and see what's available.

Conducting some simple searches, beginning with "bugs," Webwise located a great site with plenty of creepy crawlies.

PARENTAL CAVEAT: When seeking out interesting home pages, children should never be left alone, and very strict e-mail guidelines must be set and adhered to. Of course, the benefit is that seeking out interesting people and subjects on the Web is an activity that a family can, and should, enjoy together.




CREATOR: Henricus Winandus Lodewijk Bijlmaker is not a classification of insect but a Dutch entomologist, which means he studies the biology of insects. Mr. Bijlmaker is a graduate of the Agricultural University Wageningen's plant protection program, featuring entomology, genetics and nematology.

CREATOR QUOTABLE: "From the `Entomology for Beginners' site, parents and children can find some basic information on insects," Mr. Bijlmaker says. "It includes a quick look at the anatomy of adult insects and a short story about their metamorphosis" WORD FROM THE WEBWISE: Mr. Bijlmaker is fluent in five languages, and his site was found searching the keyword "entomologists." From his curriculum vitae (resume), it appears that he is a world traveler, having spent time studying insects and plants in exotic locations such as Ghana, Zanzibar, Ethiopia, Nicaragua and Zambia.

"Entomology for Beginners" is a great aspect of Mr. Bijlmaker's site. It provides some basic information on insects in addition to a complete glossary of entomology terms.

From the recognizable, such as arachnida, representing spiders, mites and ticks, to words like bioluminescence, this site is an enlightening experience.

Visitors will even get a taste of the creator's sense of humor when clicking in the area "Who's afraid of red . . . ?" Younger kids will enjoy this wacky bit of Web humor. …