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Museum Trip to Europe

May, 2001
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NSF-PEET co-PIs Brett Ratcliffe and Mary Liz Jameson conducted collections-based research in some of the principal European museums with our PEET PhD students, Andrew Smith and Federico Ocampo. Our primary goal was to study the many type specimens relating to our projects that are housed in the Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle (Paris), Museum für Naturkunde (Berlin), Museum Naturalis (Leiden), National Museum of Natural History (Prague), and the Natural History Museum (London). Our first stop was the Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris where we spent about a week.
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Our host, Dr. Jean Menier, Head of the Coleoptera section at the National Museum in Paris. There is just no denying the fascination of scarabs, even to a dedicated
clerid specialist.
Unlike most collections in the New World, many collections in Europe (like these at the National Museum in Paris) are stored in boxes that are placed on shelves like books.
Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.
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Mary Liz with Olivier Montreuil who was finishing his PhD on scarabs at the Museum under the direction of Yves Cambefort.
Photo by Federico Ocampo.

Fede, Brett, and Andrew in the attic of the museum where lighting and accessibility are both restricted. But, there is good stuff there!! Photo by Mary Liz Jameson.

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Mary Liz and Brett took a weekend side trip to Bordeaux in the south of France to visit renowned scarab worker, Dr. Renaud Paulian. Dr. Paulian has published on scarabs for over 50 years! Renaud is in his 90s and is now retired, but he is still a fountainhead of information. Photo by Mary Liz Jameson.

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Patrick Arnaud, a dedicated amateur scarab worker, hosted Team Scarab at his house for an evening of camaraderie and bug talk. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.
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While Andrew and Fede continued their work in Paris, Brett and Mary Liz traveled to Prague, Czech Republic, for three days where we were generously hosted by Vlada Maly, an incredibly energetic and knowledgeable amateur scarab worker.
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From left: Jiri Zidek, Mary Liz, and Vladislav Maly in Vlad's bug room. Vlad spoke no English, and his good friend, Jiri (formerly at the University of New Mexico), acted as translator. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.

Vlada with a drawer of goliathines. His collection is extensive and immaculately curated. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.

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The tumble-down front facade of an old imperial residence that now houses the entomology collections of the National Museum of Natural History. Photo by Mary Liz Jameson.
From left: Vlada Maly, Brett, Josef Jelínek (Curator of Coleoptera at the Museum), and a Japanese visitor studying staphylinids. Photo by Mary Liz Jameson.
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Fede left Paris for Leiden to study the hybosorid collections at the National Museum of Natural History in Leiden, the Netherlands, while Andrew linked up with Brett and Mary Liz for almost a week in Berlin at the Museum fŸr Naturkunde of Humboldt University. Berlin has fabulous holdings of Rutelinae and Dynastinae.
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Brett with Milan Krajcik at the National Museum. Milan recently published a three-volume catalog of the Cetoniinae of the world and is now beginning a catalog of the Lucanidae. Photo by Mary Liz Jameson.

Long-time (and never aging) collections manager Joachim Schulze in the Coleoptera range. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.
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Andrew and Mary Liz working in the collections in Berlin . . . nearly as close to Valhalla as a beetle person can get without being in the field. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.

Dr. Fritz Hieke (with his requisite cigarette), carabid specialist and retired curator of Coleoptera. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.
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Part of the destroyed, still-standing, old Coleoptera wing of the museum. This part of the building was destroyed by bombs during an air raid in March 1945. Fortunately for all of us today, the beetles had been removed to a basement storage area two weeks before. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.

Climb every mountain . . . Brett with drawer of cetoniines at the Museum für Naturkunde. Photo by Mary Liz Jameson.
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While Andrew continued his ruteline work in Berlin for a few additional days, Mary Liz and Brett went to Leiden in the Netherlands to link up with Fede. The mostly Old World collections of the National Museum are extensive and well-curated.
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Dr. Jan van Tol, Chief Curator of Insects, with Fede and the hybosorid collection.
Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.
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The National Museum of Natural History in Leiden. Offices, labs, and exhibit areas in the foreground, and collections storage in the high-rise tower in the background. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.
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From Berlin and Leiden, all of us traveled to London to work for several days at the British Museum of Natural History. Arriving on a bank holiday when the museum was closed, we visited Down House, the country home of Charles Darwin, just to the south of London....
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Mary Liz at a small park in Leiden. Acquiring bait for dung beetles is apparently verboten! Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.
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From left: Fede, Mary Liz, Andrew, and Collections Manager Malcolm Kerley tracking down specimens in the Coleoptera range. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.

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......The back of Down House, home of Charles Darwin. The house and grounds are now a Historic Trust property. Photo by Brett Ratcliffe.
 
Chuck and Brett at the BM.
Photo by Andrew Smith.
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Some of Darwin's insect collection at Down House gathered during his voyage on the Beagle. Other parts of the collection are at the Museum of Natural History. Photo by Mary Liz Jameson.
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UNSM logo
Division of Entomology
W 436 Nebraska Hall
University of Nebraska State Museum
University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Lincoln, Nebraska 68588-0514 USA
Curator:
Brett C. Ratcliffe
(402) 472-2614
bratcliffe1@unl.edu
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