April Updates: Identification, Conferences, and Bees!

Hi Everyone!

We are still busy as ever in the lab. We finally got the correct unit trays and are fast at work getting specimens into drawers to be finally archived! If you want to help us with the archival process in the lab, please email MaLisa to set up a date to visit in the lab.

We are also still busy with the remaining few identifications and a large draft species report that is currently 278 pages! For the 2020 bowl survey, it is mostly Lasioglossum left. For the Specialist Bee Survey, we have a few hundred tricky Andrena and Lasioglossum, but are getting those wrapped up. Once all of those are identified, MaLisa will send out the final reports. We are getting close! I can say that we got at least 50 different species of Andrena in the specialist bee project!

NCB-ESA meeting in OKC:

The student poster session at the NCB meeting was fun!

A few weeks ago, Dr. Goodell, MaLisa, and Cheyenne went to the North Central Branch meeting of the Entomological Society of America. It was held in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma this year, so we were in for a long drive. Dr. Goodell had a poster of her work with colleagues and MaLisa gave a presentation on the Ohio Bee Survey and highlights from the bowl trap efforts. As Cheyenne’s first conference as part of her graduate work, she got to learn the ins and outs of the fun insect meeting. You can see her poster on bumble bees here: Cheyenne ESA poster 2023

Her poster did so well that Cheyenne ended up winning second place poster in her section.  Congratulations Cheyenne!

eDNA mini project:

Our undergraduate assistant, Keri, received an internal grant to test a new method for identifying bees nesting in the soil. By probing the nest hole with a clean swab, she is trying to pick up environmental DNA (eDNA) that the inhabitant left. Every living organism sheds a small amount of DNA wherever they go. If we can pick up some of this DNA, extract it, and amplify it, we can use it to identify occupant of the hole. Keri’s research is a “proof-of-concept” project with that will potentially introduce a new method for monitoring bees. Keri had fun swabbing nests and getting outside in the nice weather.

Example of swabbing a nest hole that we are fairly confident is a bee nest.

This nesting aggregation is under a barn, so we are hoping to see if we can detect the bees, but also the parasitic bees that might be here.

This hillside had partly collapsed, and bees were taking advantage of the exposed soil.

All for now,



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