It was a day for UC Davis employees to bring their offspring to campus to show what they and their peers do, and to interest them in career choices and opportunities.
The David and Sarah Trombly family (David works for UC Davis Utillties) were there with their three sons, Daniel, 5, Joshua, 4, and Joseph, 11 months. Joshua, the entomology fan in the Trombly family, exulted over the bugs, eagerly asking the Bohart scientists for identification. His smile widened each time he received an answer.
Amiyah Robinson, 8, was among the daughters who participated in TODS, joining her mother, Chelsy Robinson, who works in Human Resources. Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum and professor of entomology, introduced them to the fascinating world of insects.
Bohart associates and UC Davis students Emma Cluff and Wade Spencer showed jewels beetle specimens, and live insects--Madagascar hissing cockroaches ("hissers") and walking sticks--part of the museum's petting zoo. Cluff held a hisser in her hand while a walking stick crawled up her forehead.
Then it went from bugs to snakes! Amiyah walked down the hallway to the display provided by the Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology. Owner Donnelly “Papaya” West of Papaya Pythons, Davis, was there for an educational presentation on snakes. Amiyah petted K'uychi, an 8-foot-long, 9-pound rainbow boa, Epicrates cenchria. True to its name, its colors resembled a rainbow in the sunlight.
Want to see more Bohart Museum insects? The Bohart is displaying 17 drawers of insect specimens at the 142nd annual Dixon May Fair, which opened Thursday, May 11 and continues through Sunday, May 14. The specimens are displayed all four days in the Floriculture Building. Scientists will be at the Floriculture Building on two afternoons: Friday, May 12 and Saturday, May 13 with the hissers and the sticks. Fairgoers will be invited to hold and photograph them. On Friday afternoon, an added attraction is Wade Spencer showing his scorpions, Hamilton and Celeste. Then on Saturday, entomologist Jeff Smith, who curates the butterfly and moth display at the Bohart Museum, will discuss and show his insect specimens, gathered from many parts of the world. (See May 10 Bug Squad blog)
The UC Davis Bohart Museum of Entomology is again sponsoring two summer Bio Boot Camps: one for youths entering the seventh, eighth or ninth grade this fall, and one for youths entering grades 10 through 12 this fall.
"The camps focus on insect science and wildlife biology, due to our partnership with the UC Davis Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology," said camp coordinator Tabatha Yang, the Bohart Musuem's education and outreach coordinator.
The Bio Boot Camp, the seventh annual camp for middle school students, will take place Monday-Friday, June 19-23. It's based in Davis, but Thursday night features an overnight stay at the UC Berkeley's Sagehen Field Station, near Truckee. The total cost, including meals and housing, is $425.
Bio Boot Camp 2.0, the fifth annual camp for high schoolers, is set July 23 to 29. They will spend one night at UC Berkeley's Quail Ridge Reserve, near Winters. "The next day will be spent exploring UC Davis and the museums," Yang said. "Then Monday night through Saturday morning, the camp is at the Sagehen Field Station where the youths will be developing mini research projects." The total cost, including meals and housing, is $795.
Pre-enrollments take place January through March, and the campers are selected for formal enrollment in early April. "We do this to select the most genuinely interested campers," Yang explained. The process is already under way: the first application came from Germany.
Enrollment is kept low to provide quality experiences. The middle-school camp is limited to 12 students and the high school camp, to 10. Each camp has two instructors. The Bohart Museum Society sponsors need-based partial scholarships for several campers each year.
For more information, access the website at http://bohart.ucdavis.edu/summer-camp. Yang can be reached at at firstname.lastname@example.org or (530) 752-0493.
Biodiversity--that's what it's at on Sunday, Feb. 12 at the University of California, Davis.
That's when four museums or centers that engage in education and research involving insects, vertebrates or plants will host open houses.
And folks will be amazed, officials promise.
The Bohart Museum of Entomology, the Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology and the Botanical Conservatory will be open to the public from 1 to 4 p.m., while the Center for Plant Diversity will be open from 2 to 4 p.m.
"This will be a fun day where people of all ages can visit UC Davis and check out a number of our research and teaching collections," says Tabatha Yang, education and outreach coordinator for the Bohart Museum and Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology. "Each collection is special and an important scientific resource. I think people will be amazed."
Yang calls it a "behind-the-scenes look at some top research collections."
"There will be staff and students on hand to answer questions and engage people. With Valentine's Day close by there will be some exhibits with a bent toward our love of the natural world, attracting a mate, and mating! But don't worry--it will be appropriate for all ages. For plants this means pollination and that ties back to insects and other animals like bats! "
The event is the first-ever on campus and may become an annual event. "The various collections have talked about doing a museum day," Yang said. "In early February, there is an annual Museum Day for the Sacramento area. This involves the zoo, the railroad museum and other attractions."
Theme of the Bohart Museum open house will be “Bug Lovin.’” The Bohart Museum, located at 1124 Academic Surge on California Drive, is home to more than seven million insect specimens; a live petting zoo (including Madagascar hissing cockroaches and walking sticks; and a gift shop. The director is Lynn Kimsey, professor of entomology at UC Davis. The museum is affiliated with the Department of Entomology.
The Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology (MWFB) is a vertebrate museum dedicated to education, outreach, conservation, and research. It is located in 1394 Academic Surge, California Drive and is part of the Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology. MWFB is managed by curator Andrew Engilis, Jr. and collections manager Irene Engilis.
The UC Davis Botanical Conservatory, directed by Ernesto Sandoval, is a 3,600 square-foot greenhouse complex located north of Storer Hall on Kleiber Hall Drive. Its mission "to inspire, facilitate, promote and engage our visitors with an understanding and appreciation of plants, their diversity and the pivotal role they serve in the environments where they are found," Sandoval says. The Botanical Conservatory is part of the Plant Biology Section, Department of Plant Sciences. The conservatory includes more than 3,000 live specimens from 150 families.
The Center for Plant Diversity, directed by Dan Potter of Plant Sciences, is located in 1026 Sciences Laboratory Building, near Briggs and Storer halls. Part of the Department of Plant Sciences, it houses the J.M. Tucker and Beecher Crampton Herbaria. "We are going to have plant pressing and mounting demonstrations as well as tours," says curator Ellen Dean.
Feb. 12 also marks the birthday anniversary of naturalist Charles Darwin (1809-1882). Yang pointed out that "Darwin was inspired by exploring and collecting plants and animals from all over the world. This connection to nature and curiosity is what fueled Darwin's research. Our collections can inspire that same sort of curiosity and questioning.”
Yes, it promises to be an amazing day!
You may have heard about the "Bug Boot Camp" that ant specialist Phil Ward, professor of entomology at the UC Davis Department of Entomology, conducts for graduate and undergraduate students every other summer.
The real name of the five-week field course is "Insect Taxonomy and Field Ecology" (Entomology 109) but everyone calls it "Bug Boot Camp." The primary goal is to acquaint students with the taxonomic and biological diversity of insects. The students--aka happy campers--gather at the UC Sagehen Creek Field Station, located about 6,800 feet on the eastern slopes of the Sierra Nevada.
That's the Bug Boot Camp. Now there's a newly launched "Bio Boot Camp."
The Bio Boot Camp, though, is a one-week camp for young teens interested in science, particularly entomology and wildlife biology. It's sponsored by the Bohart Museum of Entomology and the Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology (MWFB).
Youths entering the seventh, eighth or ninth grades this fall and who have a passion for science are invited to apply. The camp will be limited to a maximum of 16 youths.
Dates: June 20 to 24
Site: UC Davis campus with an overnight stay at the UC Sagehen Creek Field Station.
Activities at the full-day camp will include observing animals, comparing valley to mountain fauna, collecting insects and exploring the anatomy of a dissected bird, she said.
“The goal of the camp is to provide an educational opportunity for students who already have a passion for entomology and wildlife biology, but who have outgrown most other camps and are still too young for internships,” Yang said. “We want to fill that gap, and expose them to the process of science as it is conducted at a top research institute like UC Davis.”
“A specialized camp like this has been frequently requested by visitors to the museum and participants in our other education and outreach programs,” Yang said.
Campers will search for and collect insects, dissect a bird, observe mammals and survey fish with other who share the same keen interests, Yang said. Monday through Wednesday, participants will delve into the research conducted at the museums and several research sites along Putah Creek as well as other locations on campus.
On Thursday and Friday the camp will explore the Sierras with a Thursday overnighter at the Sagehen Creek Field Station.
The two museums sponsoring the Bio Boot Camp are both located in Academic Surge on California Drive, UC Davis campus.
The Bohart Museum, located at 1124 Academic Surge and part of the UC Davis Department of Entomology, houses a worldwide collection of nearly eight million insect specimens and a “petting zoo” of live insects such as Madagascar hissing cockroaches and walking sticks. It is the seventh largest insect museum in North America and is open to the public Monday through Thursday and on special weekends
The Museum of Wildlife and Fish Biology, located in 1394 Academic Surge and part of the Department of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology, houses one of the most significant modern collections of birds, mammals, and fish in California. It is among the top ten collections of vertebrates in California and the third-largest university-managed collection in the state. The MWFB is dedicated to education, outreach, conservation, and research. This museum is not generally open to the public, but tours can be arranged in advance.