[nafex] FW: Bee Museum Houses World-Class Collection

Lon J. Rombough lonrom at hevanet.com
Thu Jul 20 14:05:14 EDT 2000


This item is one of the news releases and story leads that ARS Information
distributes on weekdays to fax and e-mail subscribers. You can also get the
latest ARS news on the World Wide Web at
www.ars.usda.gov/is/pr/thelatest.htm.
* Feedback and questions to ARS News Service via e-mail: isnv at ars-grin.gov.
* ARS Information Staff, 5601 Sunnyside Ave., Room 1-2251, Beltsville MD
20705-5128, (301) 504- 1617, fax (301) 504-1648.


----------
From: "ARS News Service" <isnv at ars-grin.gov>
To: "ARS News List" <ars-news at ars-grin.gov>
Subject: Bee Museum Houses World-Class Collection 
Date: Thu, Jul 20, 2000, 6:36 AM


STORY LEAD:
Bee Museum Houses World-Class Collection

___________________________________________

ARS News Service
Agricultural Research Service, USDA
Marcia Wood, (510) 559-6070, mwood at asrr.arsusda.gov
July 20, 2000
___________________________________________

One of the world's top 10 bee museums--the U.S. National Pollinating Insects
Collection in Logan, Utah--safeguards specimens of nearly 1 million bees,
wasps and other insects. The collection not only houses little-known bees
that are native to the United States, but also boasts a unique array of
colorful, exotic bees from around the world including Mexico, Costa Rica
Argentina, and Spain.

The collection is part of the Agricultural Research Service's Bee Biology
and Systematics Laboratory, located on the campus of Utah State University
in Logan.  ARS is the U.S. Department of Agriculture's chief research
agency.

Bees repose snugly in neat arrays within the museum's 1,600 drawers.  The
insects  range in size from the petite Perdita minima, a light tan,
1/8-inch-long bee that lives in the Sonoran and Mojave Deserts, to the
imposing 1.5-inch-long Xylocopa frontalis, or carpenter bee, a brown or
blackish-brown insect from Central and South America.

A steady stream of requests to help identify bees pours into the laboratory
all year, according to curator Terry L. Griswold, a research entomologist.
In 1999, the museum identified a record-breaking 15,100 specimens sent in
from all over the world plus an additional 75,000 specimens collected by
Griswold and colleagues.

Some requests come from beekeepers who need help identifying strange bees
that have wandered into wooden blocks meant to house other species. Other
inquiries come from agricultural officials who inspect cargo at airports and
shipping terminals, looking for invasive insects that could threaten
America's fields and orchards.

Homeowners beleaguered by bees that have taken up residence in the walls of
a bedroom or garage similarly want to know the identity of the unwanted
house guests. And, researchers eager to learn about bees they've recently
collected from places near and far will often find out from Griswold that
they've discovered a new species.


___________________________________________

Scientific contact: Terry L. Griswold, ARS Bee Biology and Systematics
Laboratory, Logan, Utah, phone (435) 797-2524, fax (435) 797-0461,
beeweb at cc.usu.edu.
___________________________________________
This item is one of the news releases and story leads that ARS Information
distributes on weekdays to fax and e-mail subscribers. You can also get the
latest ARS news on the World Wide Web at
www.ars.usda.gov/is/pr/thelatest.htm.
* Feedback and questions to ARS News Service via e-mail: isnv at ars-grin.gov.
* ARS Information Staff, 5601 Sunnyside Ave., Room 1-2251, Beltsville MD
20705-5128, (301) 504- 1617, fax (301) 504-1648.





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