Erin Tripp, Ph.D, Curator of botany for the University of Colorado Museum of Natural History and assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, was collaborating with ecologist Lynn Riedel and other staff members at the City of Boulder’s Open Space and Mountain Parks (OSMP) program to inventory the lichens along the sandstone cliffs that comprise White Rocks. Professor Tripp was walking back to her car when an unfamiliar lichen caught her eye. Later that week, Tripp spotted a second species of lichen that she suspected might also be a new species.
The banners displayed on the second floor and in the stairwells of the museum are high resolution images highlighting selected items from the collection. Last year’s images of specimens from the Botany collection have been replaced with images of bats from the Vertebrate Zoology collection.
Bats make up over one quarter of the mammals on earth and there are over 1,000 species worldwide. Find out more about these fascinating flying mammals here http://www.defenders.org/bats/bats.
For information about the museum’s Vertebrate Zoology collection, visit our website here: http://cumuseum.colorado.edu/research/vertebrates
The Bees’ Needs is a Citizen Science project of the CU Museum of Natural History. We are studying the diversity and abundance of solitary native bees in communities across the Northern Front Range of Colorado. To do this, we give our volunteers Bee Blocks, where their solitary bees can nest, and then we ask them to look at the blocks every two weeks during the breeding season to tell us if they see signs of nesting bees. The native bees that breed in these blocks are docile and unlikely to sting and they are very important components of healthy ecosystems.
Unfortunately, we’ve signed up all of our citizen scientists for this year already. But you can learn more about our research, native solitary bees and wasps, find a design for making your own Bee Block, and see what our volunteers are discovering by exploring our website and blog, via http://beesneeds.colorado.edu.