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ASUHIC to house large collection of Orthoptera

Earlier this month (December, 2014), ASU’s Hasbrouck Insect Collection received a valuable permanent loan of ca. 11,500 specimens (50 drawers) pertaining to 115 species of Orthoptera – grasshoppers. This valuable contemporary collection was transferred to us from the USDA-PPQ group in Lincoln, Nebraska, through an effort led by Larry Jech and Timothy Miller. The transfer arrangement is part of a collaboration that ASUHIC and the USDA Center for Plant Health Science Technology – Phoenix Lab started in 2014. Our collection will further curate and digitize these specimens to facilitate access by interested parties.


Parts of the “Nebraska Orthopteran Collection” now housed at ASUHIC.

ASU Collections Holiday Party 2014

Last Wednesday (December 17, 2014) we celebrated our first Holiday Party at the Alameda collections space. Plenty of people, food, drinks, and cheerful times. Liz Makings skillfully accompanied the Christmas carols on the keyboard. Photos are posted here.


Tom Dowling, Scott McAdams, Rebecca Dornburg, Charlotte Johnston.

And, with permission (“Sure – this could be my big break.”), we reproduce here Walter Fertig’s genial adaptation of:

On the First day of Christmas, the herbarium gave to me, a Perdix in a Pyrus tree*

On the Second day of Christmas, the herbarium gave to me
two Croton setigerus and a Perdix in a Pyrus tree

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Accessioning a Donation: Part 1

Today marked our first full day of work to transfer a very generous donation to the ASUHIC from David Ceizyk (and family). The Ceizyk donation contains large amounts of material originally from the Collection of Ira Nadborne, a long-time collector whose collection is rumored to number around 2,000,000 specimens. This post is the first of a series which will show not only the progress of processing this donation, but also walk through the steps of accessioning; that is, bringing new material into a research collection. View Part 2 here.

1. The Nadborne material

Ceizyk_donation1 Ceizyk_donation2

Pictured above is perhaps a fifth of the material contained in this large collection. Many of the specimens are pinned into various boxes (Schmidt boxes, Cornell drawers, European style museum boxes, and a vast array of homemade cardboard storage boxes). A large number of specimens are also unmounted, and stored between sheets of paper in the boxes seen on the left of the aisle.

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Stress testing a Curculio occidentis rostrum model

Via Andrew Jansen – explorations into weevil rostrum mechanics.

Curculio occidentis rostrum model, exposed to Buckling Force at 100x from taxonbytes on Vimeo.

Weekly reading: Why more sequences are not enough

Momentarily the last item in our semester-long NGS and phylogenomic analyses reading sequence. Phenomics (and ontologies) will be on the continuing menu, soon enough.

Philippe, H., H. Brinkmann, D.V. Lavrov, D.T.J. Littlewood, M. Manuel, G. Wörheide & D. Baurain. 2011. Resolving difficult phylogenetic questions: Why more sequences are not enough. PLoS Biology 9(3): e1000602. Available on-line here.