We sampled insect traps to assess the diversity of insect pollinators. Above shows Aaron and Sadie checking the traps.
Nearby the insect traps, our team searched in quadrats for open flowers. Often, however, the sampled quadrats did not have many flowers in bloom at this dry time of year.
After collecting in the field, we spent time in the lab processing insect samples and pinning. Shown under the microscope, here is an Agapostemon sp. that I pinned.
Before pinning, insect samples from the field were sorted, dried, and cleaned. For each sample, insects were carefully removed from filter paper onto a white sheet of paper (for constrast). Forceps, a paintbrush, and a hand lens were useful tools for processing.
Here are some pinned insects with the sample tags. The pinned insects are beautiful to look at, and important for science — but, for many reasons, I definitely prefer living insects over pinned ones.