Resolutions for 2017

Resolutions for 2017

Ok, so we didn’t quite meet those resolutions for 2017. What are our resolutions for 2017?

  1. Take care of the humidity issue. Persistent monitoring and reporting are key to resolving this potential problem. We’ll also look into dehumidifying strategies – e.g., remove fan vents, install some dehumidifiers – before spring hits in 2017. This should be an easy problem to solve.
  2. Post regular pest monitoring results to our calendar. A follow-up on last year’s resolution. No excuses this year, we’ll get it done.
  3. Database the Coccinellidae and Aphidae. We have the tools and student-power we need, and this one of the tasks outlined in our BRC proposal. No sweat.
  4. Write North Carolina insect-of-the-week (yes, weekly!) blog posts. OK, this resolution is ambitious. We will cover one North Carolina insect species per week by posting information on its natural history, what our research collection holds for that taxon, how to find and preserve specimens, and, of course, photos of what these insects look like. I’d also love to offer a KML file of our NCSU specimens (you could view them in Google Earth!), alongside each post, but I bet we won’t be able to do that for all species. We’ve lined up a series of these blog posts already (check this blog on Friday mornings), thanks to the hard work of my ENT 502 students from last semester. This will definitely be fun!
  5. Profile the entire collection. We’ll follow McGinley’s (1989) classic profiling methodology or use the modified INHS system, but somehow, some way we will have the collection profiled in 2017 – the earlier the better. We’ll also post the results in a very public way, similar to this page by the Natural History Museum at the University of Oslo.
  6. No more legacy data. All new data will be captured electronically from the very beginning (in the lot stage), and all prepared specimens will get unique IDs. We’ll know – in real time – how many specimens we’re adding, rather than having to go back and count them at the end of the year.
  7. Establish a consistent weekly sorting/pinning/labeling session. We tried desperately last semester to meet weekly, but our schedules were never quite in sync. I’m confident that we can find our rhythm this year, though, and that we will finally process the ever-growing collection of bulk samples in our freezer. Which leads us again to our final resolution…
  8. Add 5,000 Hymenoptera specimens to the research collection. Either from bulk (mounted and sorted at least to family) or from unsorted pinned material (in which case specimens will be determined at least to genus).

I think those are reasonable and certainly laudable resolutions for 2017. We would definitely appreciate any input you might have regarding these efforts, and we wish you all the very best in the new year!