Bring out the kazoos! I made it through the 22,000 Lasioglossum, identifying what I could and setting aside the hardest ones for later. From that large hoard of bees, I was able to confidently identify about 18,000 of them to species! It helps that a large chunk of them were either Lasioglossum versatum or L. hitchensi. There are about 2,000 of the hardest Lasioglossum specimens left, which I will go back through later once I get more experience in these remaining tricky groups. About a quarter of those specimens are males, which I will likely lump as Lasioglossum sp. and call it a day. There were also a decent number of them that had lost heads or otherwise damaged during the washing and pinning process, so that group of bees were also left as Lasioglossum sp. and noted as damaged in the notes.
We still have a few remaining groups from the 2020 bee bowls to identify. These include 193 Megachile, 159 Sphecodes, 325 Nomada, and 240 Osmia. Although they are lower numbers in comparison to the Lasioglossum, there will be a learning curve to properly identify them. So they will still take some time to get familiar with the different species. It also does not help that there are not as many recent publications on Sphecodes and Nomada, so those will be tricky to get through.
Specialist bee project:
2021 specimens – We have a little over 1,900 specimens from the 2021 sampling. These still need identified, so once I make it through some of the bee bowl specimens, I will go back through and work on specialist bee samples.
2022 specimens – sampling is ongoing! September is still time for cool weird things like Pseudopanurgus and fall flying Andrena. So on nice days I will be doing field work and processing specimens from this summer. For those who are participating in the project, please work on getting them to me soon. I will be sending out emails to participants of the specialist project for specimen turn in logistics.
Other lab updates:
We have new cabinets! And they are in the lab!
All for now,