Summer break?

The blog has been somewhat dormant this month (abject apologies to my 13 followers), but I have not. Between the end of June and the middle of August I will have crossed the continent multiple times – Montreal – Alberta – Yukon – Montreal – Maine – Montreal – Oregon – California – Montreal (yikes) on a frenzy of summer fieldwork (Alberta, Yukon), conferences (Oregon) museum visits (California, tentatively) and natural history gatherings (Maine, California). The flowers in my garden are wilting, but my brain most definitely is not. Fieldwork is good for my mental state, and there’s nothing like a good conference to get me fired up to Do Science.

So, over the next few posts I’ll be dispensing observations trivial and marginally less trivial on a dizzying array of topics including chasing flies on dry Alberta hills, the joy of a perfect cinnamon bun, talking insects (and little ice ages) with tourists in the Yukon, the importance of natural history, and why taxonomists should go to more ecology conferences.

In the meantime, to launch the fieldwork theme, here are two entomology students (Anna Solecki and Sabrina Rochefort) hard at work identifying plants, just for the fun of it

Sabrina and Anna conduct a very small inventory of alpine vegetation

and the same two entomology students hard at work identifying rocks, just for the fun of it

Everyone else on this trail was looking at Moraine Lake. How can a supervisor not be proud?

And yes, even collecting a few insects, just because they’re paid to do that (and, well, for the fun of it)

Collecting on the windy prairie? A big vehicle makes a handy windbreak

The point (if this post has one at all)? Field trips are a great and magical time to be a generalist.


About terry wheeler

professor, museum director, entomologist, ecologist, naturalist
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