School Malaise Trap Program

Developed by the Education and Outreach team at the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario at the University of Guelph, the School Malaise Trap Program has been providing a unique educational opportunity to Canadian students since the spring of 2013.

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The School Malaise Trap Program runs during the spring and fall of each year. Each participating school receives a program package, educational materials, and a Malaise trap to collect insects in their schoolyard for a specified two-week period. The specimens are sent back to the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario (BIO) where they are identified through DNA barcoding, and a report package of the results is sent to each school.


The School Malaise Trap Program’s goal is to encourage students to explore, question and understand the world around them – starting with their own schoolyard. Students are introduced to the life of a biologist and the exciting science of DNA barcoding through comprehensive lesson plans which address multiple specific expectations across elementary and secondary curricula.

Although interest in the School Malaise Trap Program has grown rapidly since it began, our capacity remains unchanged. Each year we strive to involve as many schools as BIO’s resources allow. As resources diminish, we are asking for support from generous donors so that we may keep the program alive!


Your contributions will go a long way:

  • $25 – Covers 2,500 km worth of program material shipping across Canada!
  • $50 – Covers educational material and goodies for 30 students.
  • $100 - Covers delivery of a live webcast by a biodiversity scientist for up to 100 classrooms at one time!
  • $250 – Covers the cost of a new Malaise Trap.
  • $500 - BIO staff can sort through, and pin, 7,125 School Malaise trap specimens.
  • $1,000 – Funds 1 school’s participation in the program (120 students, 285 DNA barcoded specimens, program package, educational material, Malaise trap, shipping, swag, & program results).


As a thank you for your generous donation, each donor will receive a signed thank you card from the School Malaise Trap Program Team! Also for those who donate:

  • $25 – You will receive an online subscription to The Barcode Bulletin – BIO’s quarterly newsletter of the International Barcode of Life Project, and we will list your name as part of an honor roll in an upcoming issue.
  • $50 – We will send you a set of insect bookmarks!
  • $100 – A specimen entry on the Barcode of Life Data Systems (BOLD) will be attributed to you!
  • $250 – We will send you a high-resolution insect photograph taken by one of our team members!
  • $500 – You will receive a one-on-one hour long virtual session with a biodiversity expert (perfect gift for a classroom).
  • $1,000 – Guided tour of the Biodiversity Institute of Ontario (individual or class) and recognition of sponsorship on program website.



Campaign Progress
Make a gift!
32 percent of goal achieved.
Recent Donors

the Ruiters

J Pollock, Whitewood School

Rick & Gayle Prosser


The York School Science Department