Tag Archives: collecting

What makes a good collecting trip good?

“Have a good trip! How’s the trip going? How was the trip?” These are things people say to me before, during, and after fieldwork trips. I go into the field to collect insects. I do this because that’s where a … Continue reading

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A fruit fly is not a mammal, and other revelations from the museum

There’s been a lot of discussion in the past day about a new paper published in Science. The paper is an opinion piece about an argument that’s played out many times in the past, namely: should scientists kill specimens to … Continue reading

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The samples of autumn

Most entomologists in this part of the world do their collecting in summer. There are a few reasons for this: insect diversity and activity peak in the summer months up here in the northern temperate; a lot of economically and … Continue reading

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Twin Lakes: random thoughts on Yukon fieldwork

23 July, late at night: My three week field trip to the Yukon Territory is drawing to a close and we’re back at Twin Lakes Campground, on the Klondike Highway between Whitehorse and Carmacks. By the end of this trip … Continue reading

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Yukon Ho! The quest for northern flies continues

Since 2009 I’ve been part of the Northern Biodiversity Program, a collaborative project with some excellent colleagues and a whole team of fantastic students. We collected a arthropods at 12 sites in northern Canada so we could start addressing some … Continue reading

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Stupidity is the mother of invention

Warning: the following post contains content that makes a university professor and museum director look a bit ridiculous. Readers who wish to cling to the fiction that University Professors are smart, infallible and wise may find this post unsettling. “Do … Continue reading

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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 … Continue reading

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The joy of fieldwork

I’m in the field for three weeks of chasing insects. A week in central Alberta and then off to the southern Yukon Territory. This trip is aimed at grassland flies, so it’s a little bit of a change from my … Continue reading

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Low tech science II: a simple pooter

One of the great things about entomology is that it’s a low cost pursuit. A few household items or discount store purchases can help you get started in the field. In the first installment of this series I talked about a … Continue reading

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What’s in your field bag?

Almost every field biologist carries a bag into the field, although the contents differ wildly from person to person. Here’s what I took along every day for casual collecting while I was in arctic Canada last summer (trap servicing days … Continue reading

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