Insect Collection

ENT 311: Collection Requirements


General Instructions

Over the 10-week progression of the term, you will collect and preserve specimens to create a collection that will be turned in at the end of the term for a significant portion of your lab grade. You will be given the tools to complete the collection, and we will have at least one day in class to collect as a group, and several days where time will be permitted for you to work on your collection with the aid of the lab instructor.

As you collect, you must take notes on the location, date, time, and ecological system in which you catch each specimen.

At the start of each week, you will be expected to bring in three new specimens and the associated field notes. It may be helpful to collect your notes in a single pocket-sized notebook; this information will be used to create the labels for your specimens.

Collection Requirements

  • 25 individual families must be collected and correctly identified
  • Field notes on each specimen will be recorded at time of collection
  • Each specimen is to be properly curated with correct labeling


For each specimen in the collection, one point each will be awarded for correct Order ID and correct Family ID. One point will be awarded for each correct label as well, for a total of 4 points possible per specimen. Total points possible for the collection is 100 points.

Students may earn extra points per specimen by including a third “Applied” label noting ecological/life history information. This can denote gender (ONLY if externally discernible), separate life stages (up to three), parasitoid/prey relationships, caste (Hymenoptera and Isoptera only), and mimicry (must have mimic and model). For example, a collection may receive credit for two Dermaptera: Forficulidae specimens if they are labeled correctly as male/female, even though both specimens are the same family. At least TWO specimens with differing applied labels must be presented for the extra points.

Accepted Applied Labels

Gender: Male/Female

Life Stage: Eggs/Immature larvae/Mature Larvae/Pupae/Adult

Trophism: Prey/Parasitoid (must identify counterpart, i.e. Prey (of Braconidae); Parasitoid (of


Caste: Worker/Reproductive/Soldier

Mimicry: Mimic/Model (must identify counterpart, i.e. Mimic (of Apidae); Model (for Syrphidae)).

Correct Labeling

The applied label should be placed below the other two required labels (refer to Week 1 Reading). You will not be awarded extra points without the third label.


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Entomology 311 Lab Manual Copyright © 2019 by Melissa Scherr is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.