Monthly Archives: February 2013

A Very Good Day of Collecting

We arrived at the campsite near the shores of Lago Puelo (above) in the mountains of Argentina late at night.  It had been a long day of collecting, and we were all rather tired.  There was a roaring river nearby … Continue reading

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Wicked and confused Bembidion

There are over 1200 known species of Bembidion.  Many of them are hard to tell apart.  They are small beetles.  Maybe for this reason some taxonomists have struggled with them, and their frustration occasionally is expressed when they name new … Continue reading

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Delightful DNA

Well, it looks as if Bembidion (Plataphus) curtulatum is at least three species.  The above bits of DNA show parts of 28S ribosomal DNA.  Of the 950 bases that were sequenced, this shows only those sites that differ from one … Continue reading

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3D or not to 3D?

The male genitalia of Bembidion are small and partly transparent, with complex, multiple layers. This makes them hard to photograph, and hard to illustrate.  It’s especially hard to give a sense of the three dimensional structure.  I have been exploring … Continue reading

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BotW: Bembidion confusum

The Beetle of the Day today is Bembidion confusum.  This is a common species on sandy river and pond shores east of the Rockies in North America.  It’s the species whose head appears on the “Subulate Palpomere” sign.

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Naming species and the danger of good intentions

It can be a bit of a challenge to come up with a meaningful name for a new beetle. I’m working on a paper or two in which I will be describing several new species of Bembidiina from North America.  … Continue reading

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Arroyo Queñi in Argentina

I visited this spot in Argentina in 2007; the wonderfully clear river had, along its rocky banks, some very cool carabids.  Four species were very common here:  a large, black, undescribed species of Bembidion (more on that later), a species … Continue reading

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A live revision

Over the course of the next three years, some of us (me, John Sproul, and others) in the Maddison Lab will be “revising” the Bembidiina of North America.  This means we will be going into the field in the USA … Continue reading

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Blowing Stumps with Dynamite

I happened upon a lovely paper by George Roberts in the Bulletin of the Kentucky Agricultural Experiment Station of the State University, published in June 1911.  The paper has the very promising title “Blowing Stumps with Dynamite”, and it does … Continue reading

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BotW: A brilliant Bembidion

This is a lovely but unnamed Bembidion from Arizona and New Mexico, first found by George Ball in the 1960s. I lives under willows on the banks of rivers. It is much easier to find at night (using a headlamp) … Continue reading

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