NC State University Insect Museum: Safeguarding and developing a community resource

Project: Research project

Project Details


This award is funded under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Public Law 111-5).

The North Carolina State University Insect Museum houses the largest insect collection in North Carolina (1.4 million specimens) and serves as a critical resource for research on the insects of the southern USA. This project involves: 1) relieving crippling space shortages by integrating new, high quality storage units, which also mitigate potentially harmful chemical preservation; 2) capturing and availing specimen images and metadata through the Web to any interested party; 3) educating citizen entomologists through public displays and a refined Web portal, including blogs and data access; details available at

NCSU's specimens and associated data are scientific cornerstones for biologists focusing on pests, agriculture, environmental health, bio-security, the decline (e.g., due to climate change) or range expansion (e.g., new invasions of pests) of key insect species and for monitoring environmental change associated with the increasing urbanization of an ecologically diverse region. The new equipment, infrastructure, databasing, training, and research facilitated by this grant will transform the NCSU Insect Museum from a specialized, remote resource into a regional focal point for biodiversity research and conservation, public education and outreach, broad-based graduate student training, and dissemination of natural history information. Three students will be trained in insect taxonomy and curation practices.

Effective start/end date9/1/098/31/12


  • National Science Foundation: $253,123.00


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