Bug Hunt Hong Kong

Mapping  the insect biodiversity in Hong Kong

Bug Hunt Hong Kong is an initiative from DIYBIO Hong Kong, a group of citizen scientists in Hong Kong. It is a long term citizen science project studying the insect biodiversity of Hong Kong.

Bug Hunter's Handbook

Bug Hunt Field Trip

What is Bug Hunt Hong Kong?

Bug Hunt Hong Kong is an initiative from DIYBIO Hong Kong, a group of citizen scientists in Hong Kong. It is a long term citizen science project studying the insect biodiversity of Hong Kong.
Hong Kong has a large biodiversity, with insects comprising a large part of the biodiversity. Yet most people in Hong Kong are disconnected to nature and even have an aversion of insects. We want to encourage people to take ownership of nature and to enhance the public’s knowledge and understanding of insects while contributing to the Biodiversity knowledge of Hong Kong’s insects.
The goals of the project are to build a public accessible collection of insects in Hong Kong that can be used to educate the public about Hong Kong’s insect biodiversity. This collection can be exhibited at public events such as the Hong Kong Biodiversity Week. We also want to generate DNA barcodes of the different insects in the collection in order to build a DNA barcode library of Hong Kong insects and to contribute to the international barcode of life initiative.
But who said serious science can’t be fun? We want to invite the general public as well as students from secondary schools to participate in this project. We would like to run the project in the form of a game, almost like ‘Pokemon Go’, where participants must register to participate and will receive points for contributing to the insect collection, with higher points awarded for collecting insects that are not currently in the collection. We want to try “To Catch Them All”, by trying to collect a specimen of every insect species in Hong Kong!

What are the Tracks?

Bug Photography & Filming

Bug Hunters like to walk in nature and try to find interesting bugs. They will then take photos or videos of the bugs they find and share them with each other. Some Bug Hunters become experts at macro photography (when you take photos of small things from close up so that you can see a lot of detail).

Bug Art & Design

Bugs are not only interesting, they are also beautiful. They have the most amazing colours, patterns and shapes! Bug Hunters get inspired by these wonderful colours, patterns and shapes and make beautiful bug inspires art, fashion, accessories, robots and inventions.

Bug Pet & Breeding

Bugs make wonderful pets! They don’t need a lot of food, don’t have to be taken for walks and don’t need a lot of space. They are also very interesting to watch. There are different ways of making bug-houses wherein your bugs will live happily. You can also breed your bugs and see how they lay eggs. You can then monitor and document their life cycle from egg to adult.

Bug Ecology

Bug Ecology is the scientific study of how bugs, individually or as a community, interact with the surrounding environment. We want to know what they eat and what eats them? Where they are found? If their habitat is in danger? What do their eggs look like? How do they change over time as they grow. Where do they sleep? In what way are they important? Many bugs help in pollination, or they help to break down the poo or dead bodies of other animals. Many insects eat other insects and prevent them from taking over the world. Some insects are useful by making honey or silk.

Bug Taxonomy

Each species of bug is different from all others in some way. By looking at all the details of a specific bug, we can find how it differ from all the other bugs in the world. Luckily some Great Bug Hunters of the past have already named many bugs in the world hand have left us with special keys to identify the ones that they have described. So we can use these keys it identify the bus we collect. But, there are many bugs that have never been found before and that have not been described or named. It is every Bug Hunter’s dream to find a new species of bug that has not been found before. You too can find new species of bugs if you try hard enough.

Bug DNA Barcoding

Just as you can use morphology to identify different bugs, can you also use DNA Barcodes. We can generate short DNA sequences from different bugs that can be used to identify them. We can use the DNA barcodes to: (a) Identify the bug’s species (b) Draw genetic trees to see how different bugs are related to each other (c) Compare the DNA Barcodes from the same species of bug from many different locations to see if we can learn something about different populations or how spread through an area through time. This link up very nicely with studies of bug Ecology.