Butterflies and Moths of North America

collecting and sharing data about Lepidoptera

Connecticut Butterfly Atlas Project

The Connecticut Butterfly Atlas Project (CBAP) was undertaken to better understand the distribution of butterflies in Connecticut. It was a joint venture of the Geological and Natural History Survey of the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection (DEP), the Connecticut Entomological Society, and the Connecticut Butterfly Association. CBAP took place from 1995 to 1999, and the CBAP Atlas was published in 2007.

Search and browse data collected as part of the Connecticut Butterfly Atlas Project.

CBAP Methodology
The recording scheme for localities used quadrangles corresponding to the standard 7.5 minute (1:24,000) topographic maps of the United States Geological Survey. The 116 quadrangles that make up Connecticut were numbered following the Connecticut Department of Environmental Protection scheme. Each quadrangle was divided into 6 equal blocks, and each block was numbered in a standard manner. The presence of a species in a block was documented by a voucher photograph or specimen and an associated data card, which were placed together in a glassine envelope and submitted to project personnel. No sight records were accepted. Vouchers are currently housed in the Entomology Division of the Peabody Museum of Yale University and in the biological research collections of the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at the University of Connecticut, Storrs.To verify the species identity of each voucher, the CBAP established a Verification Subcommittee consisting of three lepidopterists from the Steering Committee (Larry Gall, Charles Remington, and David Wagner) and other knowledgeable individuals, including Clay Taylor and Mike Thomas. It met at least once each year, usually after the field season, for an all-day session of voucher sorting and identification. With the exception of the most common and easily identifiable species, the Verification Subcommittee required that at least two of its members pass judgment on the identity of each voucher. Several outside experts also provided an additional check of species identifications in taxonomically difficult groups.

CBAP Results
The five year CBAP project generated 8,465 vouchers representing 110 species of butterflies. Of these, 6,713 (79 percent) were specimens and 1,752 (21 percent) were photographs or slides. A total of 351 people contributed butterfly vouchers to the project. The 15 most commonly vouchered species accounted for nearly half of the CBAP records. Label data from 8,641 specimens, representing 113 species of butterflies, were recorded from 26 private and institutional collections.

For comprehensive information about the project and its results, purchase the CBAP Atlas.