Need help identifying an insect, spider, or other arthropod? Here are a few resources that might help.

When asking for help identifying any organism, please note the geographic location, habitat, behavior, or any other information about the specimen. Many species look very similar, but sometimes we can identify them by the plants (or household items) they feed on, habitats they are found in, or typical behaviors they display.

UCANR Pest Bulletins – information about many urban and agricultural pests

Bay Area Critters – insects and other arthropods commonly encountered in the Bay Area

Berkeley BioKeys – pictorial key to insects, birds, reptiles, amphibians, and mammals

Bug Guide – post images of critters you want identified at

Common Bay Area Spiders – pictures of common synanthropic spiders

iNaturalist – make observations and get identification help with this smart phone app

Email photos and descriptions to[at]