Troutnut on Jul 22, 2007July 22nd, 2007, 8:37 pm EDT
Luke, I've stickied this topic for you for a while. Let me know if you get enough people and don't need to recruit any more, and I'll un-sticky it.
Can you write a little more here about the specifics of this research? Also, what are you looking for in the way of quantity, specimen preparation, etc? For example, would it be worthwhile for anyone to send you 5 dozen H. limbata spinners they scooped up, or are you just looking for unique bugs?
Jason Neuswanger, Ph.D.
Troutnut and salmonid ecologist
Konchu on Jul 23, 2007July 23rd, 2007, 2:19 am EDT
This project is another big step in sorting out the natural history of North America's mayflies. A colleague and I are working together on a project to make a fresh collection of as many different North American mayflies as possible. Multiple specimens for single species collected from several places will be very helpful so that we can see natural variation.
Specimens should be collected into 100% ethanol, if possible.
We'll pull tissue from the specimens and get information about the DNA. DNA is useful for studying populations and how they move and change and where they came from. It will help answer questions about recolonization of streams and seasonal distributions of species. It is also useful for confirming which spinners go with which nymphs and the like. As some of you have seen in discussions here, current mayfly identification is often more art than science for certain species.
The new scientific tools that we have now can help lead to a better understanding of the basic biology of mayfly species, which in the long run, means an increased ability to manage and conserve freshwater habitats and watersheds.
Konchu on Jul 23, 2007July 23rd, 2007, 3:02 am EDT
I should put a qualification or two on all this.
Right now, I'm just trying to put feelers out to see who is possibly interested in helping. I am not ready for specimens to start pouring in. Even when I am, I will have to be selective about accepting specimens to be practical with my time; this is why I'm communicating with people via PMs.
My thought is that a grassroots effort will enable us to cover a wide geographic area and seasonal span in a short amount of time.
Konchu on Aug 10, 2007August 10th, 2007, 11:34 pm EDT
Already a big thanks needs to go out to those who've 'jumped' at the chance to participate.
I'll try to update progress on the project as we go along. Already, I've got about twenty species from the West Coast. People from this site are collecting in several other geographic regions now to get the other 611 some odd North American species. This could mark the first scientific use of the term TroutNut.
Hopefully, a little peer pressure will help me to keep moving on this and sharing the progress. I hope also to share some Web resources that I'm developing as spinoffs of this project that users of this site might find interesting or helpful, including a mayfly habitats page.
If you've got questions or concerns, please let me know.
Konchu on Sep 5, 2007September 5th, 2007, 10:10 am EDT
No worries. I am wrapped up with a number of other projects myself. If anyone else is interested in this, please contact me! At some point, I'll post a list of species that have come from Users of this site.
Bigfly on Dec 14, 2009December 14th, 2009, 2:54 am EST
Konchu, I'm a guide/bugfan. Home water is the Truckee River, CA.
We have a population that to me, seems unique.
Semi-sparse hatches, but a wide variety.
I would enjoy helping out, but especially interested in your ID's.
Can we access info afterwards? Send me a PM if you still need help.
Konchu, this is an old thread, but I'll bite. :-) Any chance you are still doing this project and need some New England samples? I'm in VT and do regular 'Bug Hunts' as a method of introducing people to water quality monitoring.
e-mail is preferred: blackrivercleanup(at)yahoo(dot)com.
Here are some now published results from the request I put out a few years ago. This study certainly presents a can of worms. Thank you to all who helped by sending a few specimens. I regret we could not name everyone in text. Happy reading.