ESA Meeting & Subsequent Collecting
Four members of the Franz Systematics Lab went to the Annual Meeting of the Entomological Society of America: Salvatore Anzaldo, Andrew Jansen, Andrew Johnston, & Guanyang Zhang. Except for Andrew Johnston, we all presented talks on our research. Sal and I presented in the 10 minute paper competition, while Guanyang presented during a member symposium and as the Featured Young Professional during the SysEB Member Symposium (WAY TO GO!!!). Nico Franz also submitted a poster showcasing the Symbiota project WoNA (Weevils of North America). We attended many interesting and intellectually stimulating presentations during the conference, and made sure to spend time networking and socializing with our peers and fellow researchers during the meetings of the Entomological Collections Network (ECN), and the Coleopterists Society. All in all, it was a blast! Afterwards, we spent 4 days on the road collecting insects. Andrew Johnston sought Eleodes, a genus of Tenebrionidae, while I chased after my weevils in the genus Minyomerus. We met with considerable success in the field, and even managed to bring home live critters. We collected primarily in sand dunes, including one locality north of Austin, as well as the Monahans Sandhills, and the Red Dunes near El Paso. It was a truly memorable experience.