OPAL re-housing project starts … 3

OPAL re-housing project starts ...
The funding hasn’t come through yet but I always planned to make a contribution myself so last Friday I bought the first 20 drawers from Max Barclay at the Natural History Museum in London! I didn’t have to buy them so quickly but I wanted to make a tangible start to the project and it ...

OPAL funding

OPAL funding
Earlier this year The Open Air Laboratories (OPAL) network announced that they had made grants available to UK natural history societies and recording schemes. OPAL are a multipartner organization that aims “to create and inspire a new generation of nature-lovers by getting people to explore, study, enjoy and protect their local environment.” They are funded ...

Is art worth killing for?

It might sound like a strange question to ask an entomologist but a recent debate on bug_girl’s blog got me thinking. Obviously, I have no qualms about collecting insects for my studies because my work contributes to scientific knowledge and indirectly benefits the things I am interested in. But are art displays like those by ...

Dorset 2

Dorset
Just having a few days away in Dorset, visiting my parents. Lovely warm, sunny weather so far and the scenery in wonderful down here. First trip was to Powerstock Common and although we didn’t see the Marsh Fritillaries (having a bad few years apparently) we did see a few Wood Whites and my favourite – ...

Palearctic reorganisation finished!

Palearctic reorganisation finished!
Ta Da!! I have finally arranged my palearctic specimens into their correct drawers – alphabetically by genus. It started off in 8 drawers but allowing for gaps and slack-space it finally stretched to 11 drawers (195 species). Amazing really – I didn’t know I had so many tachinids!! The first drawer in the photo is ...

Sturmia bella update

Sturmia bella update
Just received an update from Dr Owen Lewis, the manager of the Sturmia bella project, a project set up to investigate the role of Sturmia bella in the decline of the Small Tortoishell (Aglais urticae) butterfly. I have attached his first-year report below (in PDF format) and it makes interesting reading. While Sturmia is undoubtably ...

Palearctic reorganization

I decided not to avoid it any more and started organizing my Palearctic collection into glass-topped drawers and unit trays. This means bringing together my British material (3 store-boxes); my Russian specimens (1 store box), Finnish specimens (1 store box) and my existing European specimens (1 store box). Having everything together in one place makes ...

Finnish finished

Finnish finished
Just packaged up some flies to go back to Jari in Finland – he lent me some of his Malaise trapped tachinids to identify, with the promise of sharing the identified ones between us. Towards the end I had to admit defeat with the Siphona sp. (the Finnish fauna is totally different to what I ...