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Posts Tagged: Steve Heydon

Up Close and Personal with a Female Flame Skimmer

What a beauty.

But not nearly as striking as her male counterpart.

The flame skimmer dragonfly (Libellula saturata) owned a perch on a bamboo stake last Tuesday in residential Davis.

Davis resident Gary Zamzow, a dynamite insect photographer (especially bumble bees), pointed his Pentax camera at the insect, just inches away.

The dragonfly did not move.

“The female flame skimmers are not as intensely orange as the males are and they also have the expansions on the 7th abdominal tergite that you can see in your picture  (below),” said senior museum entomologist Steve Heydon of the Bohart Museum of Entomology (http://bohart.ucdavis.edu/), University of California, Davis. 

If you like dragonflies, you may want to purchase a dragonfly poster at the museum, located in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge building on Crocker Lane, or online at its gift shop.  It features 18 species of dragonfies, ranging from the common whitetail and green darner to the Western river cruiser and the bison snaketail. And, of course the flame skimmer.

Entomology doctoral candidate Fran Keller designed the poster with images provided and donated to the museum by naturalist Greg Kareofelas of Davis.   

A female flame skimmer. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A female flame skimmer. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A female flame skimmer. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Female flame skimmer being photographed with the camera of Gary Zamzow. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Female flame skimmer being photographed with the camera of Gary Zamzow. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Female flame skimmer being photographed with the camera of Gary Zamzow. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Friday, June 21, 2013 at 8:59 PM

The Biggest and the Baddest

Sometimes we divide insects into "the biggest and the baddest."

Such will be the case Sunday, Jan. 13 when the Bohart Museum of Entomology, University of California, Davis, hosts an open house from 1 to 4 p.m., in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge building.

The theme: "Extreme Insects!" That's with an exclamation point because these insects are indeed extreme, meaning quite out of the ordinary. 

The event is free and open to the public.

Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum and a UC Davis professor of entomology, says "the biggest and the baddest" include:

  • Greatest wingspan – the white witch moth from Central America (11 inches)
  • Heaviest beetle – the African goliath beetle (2 ounces, and fist-sized)
  • Loudest insect – the American cicada (108 decibels, as loud as a power saw or rock concert)
  • Fastest flier – horseflies (more than 80 miles per hour)
  • Most painful sting – the tarantula hawk wasp
  • Deadliest insect – the house fly for vectoring more than 250 different human pathogens
  • Fastest runner – the tiger beetle at 5 miles per hour
  • Deadliest insect – the harvester ant, sting 3 times as toxic as honey bee venom
  • Most beautiful moth – the moon moths and rainbow moths

The Bohart Museum houses a global collection of nearly eight million insect specimens and is the seventh largest insect collection in North America. It is also the home of the California Insect Survey, a storehouse of the insect biodiversity. Noted entomologist Richard M. Bohart (1913-2007) founded the museum in 1946. 

Bohart officials schedule weekend open houses throughout the academic year so that families and others who cannot attend on the weekdays can do so on the weekends. The Bohart’s regular hours are from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday.  The insect museum is closed to the public on Fridays and on major holidays. Admission is free.  

The Bohart Museum also includes a gift shop where visitors can purchase t-shirts, sweatshirts, posters, insect nets, books and jewelry. A live "petting zoo" features Madagascar hissing cockroaches, walking sticks and tarantulas.

The Academic Surge building is located on Crocker Avenue, formerly California Drive. 

The remainder of the open houses for the 2012-2013 academic year are:

Saturday, Feb. 2, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "Biodiversity Museum Day"

Sunday, March 24, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "Aquatic Insects"

Saturday, April 20: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Theme: UC Davis Picnic Day

Saturday, May 11, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "Moth-er's Day"

Sunday, June 9, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "How to Find Insects"

For further information, contact Lynn Kimsey at lskimsey@ucdavis.edu or senior museum scientist Steve Heydon at slheydon@ucdavis.edu. The Bohart phone number: (530) 752-0493.

Directions

'THE BAD'--This is a Culex quinquefasciatus mosquito that transmits West Nile virus and other diseases. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
'THE BAD'--This is a Culex quinquefasciatus mosquito that transmits West Nile virus and other diseases. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

'THE BAD'--This is a Culex quinquefasciatus mosquito that transmits West Nile virus and other diseases. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

'THE BIG'--This is a Madagascar hissing cockroach, one of the world's largest cockroaches. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
'THE BIG'--This is a Madagascar hissing cockroach, one of the world's largest cockroaches. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

'THE BIG'--This is a Madagascar hissing cockroach, one of the world's largest cockroaches. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Tuesday, January 8, 2013 at 6:20 PM

Draw-a-Bug Competition at Bohart Museum

If you or someone in a household near you can draw a bug, then you need to head over to the Bohart Museum of Entomology on the UC Davis campus on Saturday afternoon, Dec. 15.

The Bohart Museum is hosting an open house from 1 to 4 p.m. in Room 1124 Academic Surge on Crocker Lane. It's free and open to the public.

The theme: "Insects in Art." 

The person (all ages invited) who submits the most creative bug drawing between 1 and 3:30 p.m. will win a t-shirt at around 4 p.m.

Here's what you do: draw a bug that will fit into a button about 2-1/4 wide. The Bohart Museum folks will insert it into their button-maker machine.  If your bug art is selected as the most creative, you take the button home--and your prize, an insect-related t-shirt.

The open house will feature the illustrations of Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart and professor of entomology at UC Davis; the late Mary Foley Benson of Davis;  and Ivana Li, an undergraduate entomology student and president of the UC Davis Entomology Club. 

Visitors also will be able to see the original plates for the children’s book, “The Story of the Dogface Butterfly,” written by Fran Keller, doctoral candidate in entomology, and Laine Bauer, who received her degree in art in June from UC Davis. Greg Kareofelas of Davis, a Bohart volunteer, contributed photos.

Expanding on the open house theme, Heydon said that “Insects and Art” began as early as the caveman days.  Cave drawings found in Spain depict honey gatherers from more than 10,000 years ago.

“Insects in art are found in scientific illustrations and are represented on fabric, paintings, toys, jewelry and other media,” Heydon said.

The Bohart Museum houses a global collection of nearly eight million insect specimens and is the seventh largest insect collection in North America. It is also the home of the California Insect Survey, a storehouse of the insect biodiversity. Noted entomologist Richard M. Bohart (1913-2007) founded the museum in 1946.

In addition to the insect specimens, the Bohart houses a “live petting zoo” of Madagascar hissing cockroaches, walking sticks and tarantulas; and a gift shop filled with t-shirts, sweatshirts, jewelry, posters, insect nets, and insect-themed candy.

Bohart officials schedule weekend open houses throughout the academic year so that families and others who cannot attend on the weekdays can do so on the weekends. The Bohart’s regular hours are from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday.  The insect museum is closed to the public on Fridays and on major holidays. Admission is free.

The remaining weekend open houses:

Sunday, Jan. 13, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "Extreme Insects"

Saturday, Feb. 2, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "Biodiversity Museum Day"

Sunday, March 24, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "Aquatic Insects"

Saturday, April 20: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Theme: UC Davis Picnic Day

Saturday, May 11, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "Moth-er's Day"

Sunday, June 9, 1 to 4 p.m.
Theme: "How to Find Insects"

UC Davis undergraduate student Ivana Li with a walking stick. She's an entomologist, an artist, and president of the UC Davis Entomology Club. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
UC Davis undergraduate student Ivana Li with a walking stick. She's an entomologist, an artist, and president of the UC Davis Entomology Club. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

UC Davis undergraduate student Ivana Li with a walking stick. She's an entomologist, an artist, and president of the UC Davis Entomology Club. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Fran Keller, doctoral candidate in entomology, helps out in the Bohart Museum's gift shop. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Fran Keller, doctoral candidate in entomology, helps out in the Bohart Museum's gift shop. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Fran Keller, doctoral candidate in entomology, helps out in the Bohart Museum's gift shop. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Monday, December 10, 2012 at 10:13 PM

Bohart Museum Open House: Insect Societies!

If you're looking for something to do on Sunday, Nov. 18--something both fun and educational--you'll want to attend the Bohart Museum of Entomology’s open house.

The theme is "Insect Societies," featuring honey bees, ants and termites.

The event, free and open to the public, takes place from 1 to 4 p.m. in Room 1124 of the Academic Surge building on Crocker Lane, formerly California Drive, on the UC Davis campus. The nearest intersection is LaRue Road.

Senior museum scientist Steve Heydon says the bee displays will include a bee observation hive from the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility; a cartoon of a waggle/round/break dance created by former UC Davis student and cartoonist Beth Urabe; and a photo of an unusual bee sting captured by yours truly--that would be me--that went viral.

Billy Synk,  staff research associate at the Laidlaw facility, will provide the bee observation hive, which he also brought to the debut event of the Honey and Pollination Center on Oct. 27 at the Robert Mondavi  Institute for Wine and Food Science.

Urabe’s cartoon depicts a waggle and round dance, behaviors performed by honey bees, and then on a humorous note, she added break dancing.  She's a former cartoonist for the California Aggie newspaper.

The photo of the bee sting depicts a bee stinging Extension apiculturist Eric Mussen in the Laidlaw apiary. It's unusual in that you can see a trail of abdominal tissue; usually a sting is a clean break. It won first place in a photo competition sponsored by the Association for Communication Excellence in Agriculture, Natural Resources, and Life and Human Sciences and then was named “one of the most amazing photos of 2012” by Huffington Post.

Also planned are displays on ants and termites.  Visitors can also “get up close and personal” with the live specimens in the year-around “petting zoo.” They include Madagascar hissing cockroaches, walking sticks and tarantulas, including a rose-haired tarantula.

Featured in the gift shop will be California dogface butterfly t-shirts at a discounted prices; and caddis fly cases that can be used to string together necklaces.

The Bohart Museum, directed by Lynn Kimsey, professor of entomology at UC Davis, houses a global collection of nearly eight million insect specimens and is the seventh largest insect collection in North America. It is also the home of the California Insect Survey, a storehouse of the insect biodiversity. Noted entomologist Richard M. Bohart (1913-2007) founded the museum in 1946.

Bohart officials schedule weekend open houses throughout the academic year so that families and others who cannot attend on the weekdays can do so on the weekends. The Bohart’s regular hours are from 9 a.m. to noon and from 1 to 5 p.m., Monday through Thursday.  The insect museum is closed to the public on Fridays and on major holidays. Admission is free.

Bee observation hive will be one of the attractions at the Bohart Museum of Entomology open house. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Bee observation hive will be one of the attractions at the Bohart Museum of Entomology open house. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Bee observation hive will be one of the attractions at the Bohart Museum of Entomology open house. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Queen bee and her retinue; as seen through window of bee observation hive. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Queen bee and her retinue; as seen through window of bee observation hive. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Queen bee and her retinue; as seen through window of bee observation hive. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at 10:19 PM

An Honor Well Deserved

Sometimes you'll see him sitting cross-legged on the floor, circled by first graders. They're asking questions like "What is an insect?" and "How long do insects live?" and "What do they eat?"

Sometimes you'll see him holding Madagascar hissing cockroaches and explaining why they hiss.

Other times he's engrossed in answering questions from a fellow scientist, a walk-in visitor or a journalist. 

Very dedicated, committed and enthusiastic. That's Steve Heydon, senior museum scientist at the Bohart Museum of Entomology at UC Davis.

That's why we're glad to see Heydon receive the top award in the general contributions category at the UC Davis Staff Assembly's Citation for Excellence awards ceremony, held Aug. 2 at the  chancellor's residence.

Chancellor Linda Katehi presented him the award.

Heydon was among two other individuals and two teams singled out for distinguished awards. Their names will be engraved on a perpetual plaque at the Walter A. Buehler Alumni and Visitors' Center.

Katehi praised them for their time, efforts and investments.  “I’m so proud of you,” she told them. Rob Kerner, Staff Assembly president, read the accolades and described them as the “cream of the crop” of UC Davis employees.

“Steve is a true UC Davis goodwill ambassador in that he takes pride in the university, his department, his colleagues, and his work, which in itself, has drawn national and international acclaim,  Kerner said, in announcing the award.

His colleagues, who nominated him for the award, lauded him for bringing out “the best in everyone” and as someone who “sincerely cares." They added: "In his collaborations with other universities and government agencies, he is known for his almost intuitive competency and his quick response to queries. In short, he is a prized employee, the best of the best.”

Anyone who knows Steve Heydon (who has a doctorate in entomology) knows that he is  "always willing to drop what he’s doing to help out a scientist, reporter, staff member, volunteer or the public," his colleagues wrote.  "Steve treats everyone with the utmost respect and understanding, an earmark of an outstanding UC Davis employee."

Steve Heydon joins other outstanding UC Davis employees as 2012 recipients of the distinguished awards.  

Individual Award, Supervision:  Kathy Canevari, a former supervisor with UC Davis Extension who retired earlier this year. 

Individual Award: Campus Service: Paul Cody, coordinator of the Campus Union Center for Student Involvement. 

Team Award: General Contributions: School of Veterinary Medicine Dean’s Office, Curricular Support, comprised of Mike Beech, Melinda Carlson,  Robin Houston, Linda Royce, Erin Seay, Linda Souza, Teresa Suter, and Ken Taylor.

Team Award: Campus Service: Office of Student Development management team comprised of Catrina Wagner, Courtney Robinson, Richard Ronquillo, Chuck Huneke, and Lisa Papagni.

What's it all about? The Staff Assembly annually seeks nominees for these honors.   UC Davis employees must have distinguished themselves in one or more of the three areas of outstanding achievement: general contributions, campus service or supervision.

Hats off to all the winners and nominees who make UC Davis proud!

Bohart senior museum scientist Steve Heydon with Chancellor Linda Katehi. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Bohart senior museum scientist Steve Heydon with Chancellor Linda Katehi. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Bohart senior museum scientist Steve Heydon with Chancellor Linda Katehi. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Madagascar hissing cockroaches are a favorite of Bohart Museum visitors, and senior museum scientist Steve Heydon is eager to talk about them. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Madagascar hissing cockroaches are a favorite of Bohart Museum visitors, and senior museum scientist Steve Heydon is eager to talk about them. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Madagascar hissing cockroaches are a favorite of Bohart Museum visitors, and senior museum scientist Steve Heydon is eager to talk about them. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Friday, August 3, 2012 at 9:34 PM

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