California Beetle Project > Collections
This project is based on extensive fieldwork, throughout central and southern California. These collections have added greatly to the holdings of the Museum's entomology collection. The beetle collection is rapidly gaining standing as an important repository of central and southern Californian species. Many new specimens represent previously (and many as yet) undescribed beetle species, while others represent significant range extensions for known and rarely collected species.
A significant result of the phylogeographic component of this project will be a large collections of DNA vouchers. While none of the 28 species being examined are rare in collections, the large sample sizes and precisely georeferenced localities to go along with mitochondrial DNA sequence data for each will represent an uncommonly rich resource for studying geographic variation.
While adding over 30,000 prepared beetle specimens to the Museum's collection so far, this work has also resulted in large collections of unprepared arthropods from all groups. Residues from flight interception traps, Malaise traps, pitfall traps and litter samples contain many thousands of flies, wasps, ants, arachnids, myriapods, and other assorted arthropods. Most litter samples were berlese extracted directly into 100% ethanol, and may yield specimens suitable for molecular work. Residues are otherwise maintained in 80% ethanol, and having been collected into 80% or propylene glycol are not likely to yield molecular quality specimens. All residues are available for loan by specialists who wish to look for particular taxa.
For additional information on any part of the entomology collection contact curator Michael Caterino.
An Excel spreadsheet detailing the entomology freezer inventory (as of July, 2005) can be downloaded here: