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800Bees at the Royal Alberta Museum, Edmonton

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  • Matthias Buck
    Nov 2, 2009
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    For those of you working on bees taxonomically I would like to bring
    to your attention the bee collection at the Royal Alberta Museum in
    Edmonton. It might be unknown to many folks that our bee collection is
    fairly large (of course not comparable to the very large
    collections!). We have more than 23,000 bees from all over the world.
    12,000 are from Canada, 5,300 from the U.S. and Nearctic Mexico, 3,300
    from the neotropics, 1,200 from the Afrotropical region and the rest
    from the other biogeographic regions. Halictidae are particularly well
    represented (13,000 spms), followed by Apidae (5,100 spms) and the
    remainder are approximately equally distributed between Andrenidae,
    Colletidae and Megachilidae.

    All our material has recently been sorted to at least the genus level
    (often to subgenus) and is thus fully accessible to taxonomic study.
    However, only a relatively small number of specimens is identified to
    species level. The attached spreadsheet gives an overview of our
    collection at the genus/subgenus level broken down by biogeographic
    region and including country information. This spreadsheet will soon
    be posted on the museum's website but I am already giving you a
    preview here.

    Since genetic studies have gained much popularity I should point out
    that the vast majority of our material is over 20 years old (most of
    it from the eighties and coming out of trap residues). Chances for
    getting DNA out of these specimens are therefore very slim at best.

    If any of you are interested in borrowing material for revisionary
    work please let me know and send me a message.



    Dr. Matthias Buck
    Invertebrate Zoology
    Royal Alberta Museum
    12845-102nd Avenue
    Edmonton, Alberta
    Canada, T5N 0M6
    Phone: (780) 453-9122