Section IV., 1899. 169 ] Tranp. R. S. C.
Ylir. — Catalogue of Canadian Proctotrypidœ.
By W. Hague Harrington.
(Read 25th May, 1899.)
The insect fauna of Canada is rich in species, and worthy of
investigation both from its scientific and economic importance. In the
past, that consideration has not been given to it that it abundantly
deserves, but in recent years the ever-swelling tide of interest in insect
life, rising in the United States, has in some measure overflowed the
national boundaries and stimvdated research in Canada. It must not,
however, be inferred that Canadians have altogether overlooked this
branch of natural history, for the Entomological Society of Ontario, the
second oldest entomological society in America, has for thirty-five years
earnestly endeavoured to qtiicken an interest in our insects, and to
develop a knowledge of their forms and habits. The workers, however,
have always been few in number in proportion to the enormous territory
to be exploited, and extensive districts exist in which no collector has
ever resided or even visited.
The attention and time of some of our most enthusiastic and skilful
entomologists have also, necessarily, been in part devoted to the economic
phases of insect manifestations, as the connection of the Entomological
Society with the Agricultural Department of Ontario requires the pre-
paration of annual reports adapted to the needs of the farmer and
Naturally, under these restrictions, there has been a tendency to
collect only in the orders of which the species might be' most readilj^
exchanged and determined, or which were markedly injurious to plant-
life. Hence the lepidoptera, on account of their greater beauty, and the
coleoptera, because they can be so easily collected and preserved, have
largely monopolized attention, and their members are most fully known
in cabinets and in literature. Yet even in these orders there are still
many rare and new foi'ms to i-eward the assiduous and skilful collector,
even in the districts longest settled and most carefully investigated. ■
Of the other orders our knowledge is relatively meagre, and many
fertile fields await those who may seek to garner their treasures. This
is very markedly the case as regai'ds the hymenoptera, an order exti'emely
prolific in species and wonderfully interesting from the diversified struc-
ture and remarkable habits of the multitude of forms that compose it.
The great number of species of hymenoptera which inhabit our wide
Dominion is indicated by the annexed catalogue of a comparatively small
section of the order. Not fully indicated, however, as, although nomin-