Thursday, January 10, 2008
On the NRV Natural History list last year, there was some discussion of native bee species that have become more evident after the disastrous decline of the honeybee (which is an exotic in North America).
It struck me at the time that it would be cool if we could take a stab at identifying the native bee species in our area. Not a lot of good reference material for that easily available. Now comes this notice from Sam Droege of the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center in Beltsville, Maryland:
There will be a "week-long, hands-on workshop on native bee identification at the National Conservation Training Center in Shepherdstown, West Virginia from March 24 through March 28. It will be taught by Rob Jean of Indiana State, Mark Arduser of the Missouri Department of Conservation, Cory Sheffield of York University, and Droege himself.
The point will be to train people to ID bees down to the species level. "A synoptic collection of eastern and central bees will be available throughout the week along with large numbers of surplus specimens that participants may keep as reference material. There will also be collecting trips, plus discussions on monitoring, survey and processing techniques. If you've found something locally you can't ID, bring it along and an expert with give it a try.
Details from Sam Droege: firstname.lastname@example.org
His agency's website is here
To his announcement, Sam appended a neat poem by Carl Sandburg:
Bees in the late summer sun
Drone their song
Of yellow moons
Trimming black velvet
Droning, droning a sleepysong.