Saint Martin/Lesser Antilles/Caribbean Biology Resources on the Web

If you’re like me, you often need to identify Caribbean animals, and it’s not always easy to find resources on the web, so I figured I’d post links to some of my favorites.

The Catalog of the Lepidoptera of the French Antilles is a site in both French and English that features most of the butterflies and moths of this area. A few groups are missing (Hespirids, Pyralids, etc.) but the families that are present are well represented with photos and descriptions. The focus is primarily on Guadeloupe and Martinique, but distribution in St. Martin and St. Barths is also noted.

The Museum of Comparative Zoology Caribbean Insect Database is sometimes down, but when it’s accessible it’s a great place to find thousands of specimen photos.

Father Sanchez’s Web Site of West Indian Natural History is a terrific overview of West Indian fauna with tons of photos. It includes the full range of vertebrates and invertebrates, plus information about many plants and fungi.

The Action Nature St. Martin Guide is in French and has quite a few of the species on Saint Martin.

Mark de Silva’s page at the Moth Photographers Group is primarily focused on the Grenadines, but many of the species are found throughout the Caribbean.

The Caribbean Spiders Photo Gallery by Jo-Anne Sewlal is a great place to see photos of various spiders from different families.

Tom Murray’s Florida Butterfly Database features many species also found in the Caribbean.

BatHead has a Caribbean Bat Guide that is really terrific, plus information about which species are on each island.

Caribherp will help you identify your West Indian reptiles and amphibians. The site is very comprehensive and includes photos.

The Virgin Islands Arthropod Database is a handy resource for checking to see what species might be nearby, although you will have to go elsewhere to get photos.

And, of course, no list would be complete without The Incomplete Guide to the Wildlife of Saint Martin. With information and photos of about 300 species, it is far from comprehensive, but it is a good place to start understanding the wildlife of Saint Martin and the northern Lesser Antilles as well.

UPDATE: Barbara reminded me of the Biological Inventory of Sint Maarten, which offers an excellent overview about the flora and fauna of the island and a very valuable list of references for digging deeper.

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