What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: insect collecting for the squeamish
July 14, 2016 5:46 pm
Hi,
I’ve always been facinated by insects and recently I’ve noticed my son taking an interest too I want to encourage/develop it by starting an insect collection.
However, I’m not keen on the idea of killing them.
I come across many different insects already dead & was wondering if there’s any reason I couldn’t use these specimins instead, and if you knew of or was aware of any information based on collecting already dead insects.
Bit of an odd quetion, I realise, but hopefully you can help me.
Kind regards,
Jess
Signature: Jessica Hanlon

Car Grill Road Kill

Car Grill Road Kill

Dear Jess,
Your letter has been in the back of our mind for a few days now.  Though we do support insect collections as an educational experience, the sad state is that many school project insect collections are not maintained and they are quickly forgotten after the grade has been allocated.  We have a wonderful letter in our archives from Nancy that recounts her school collection that was assembled strictly from insects on a car grill, and we are illustrating your query with an awesome Car Grill Road Kill image we received many years back.  We think creating a collection from already dead insects is a marvelous way to reconcile your reservations.  We also believe that a truly interested youngster can develop a real appreciation for the natural world by beginning a true “capture” collection.  You might enjoy this posting as well from Susanne where we support starting a collection and we do not believe an insect collection is Unnecessary Carnage.  Doing a photo collection is another possibility for folks who do not want to kill and pin insects.

Hi,
Thanks for your reply. It definitely encouraged me to just give it a go.
My 10 year old sister my son and myself went on a hunt round the house today for dead bugs, and although some of them were quite elderly corpses by the time they were manhandled by children it has proved to be an activity that kept them both entertained for hours.
Tomorrow we’ll be trying to identify some of them. Here’s a section of our ‘bug collection for the squeamish’.

Insect Collection for the Squeemish

Insect Collection for the Squeamish

Dear Jess,
That is one impressive collection you have assembled in a very short space of time.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

2 Responses to Insect Collection Quandary

  1. Susan B. says:

    My love of insects started about 10 years ago when I got a digital camera with a really good macro setting. Even though I’m very much an amateur, I love photographing insects and my efforts to sneak up on them and get close enough for a really good shot have led me to observe them more carefully and learn about their behavior.

    I’d definitely second the suggestion of a photo collection as an alternative to killing insects. You don’t have to buy a really expensive camera with thousands of dollars worth of extra lenses and equipment–a decent quality point-and-shoot camera with good macro focusing capabilities could give you and your son a lot of fun experiences learning about bugs.

    • bugman says:

      Thanks so much for the comment Susan. It was much more refreshing for us than the two previous rant comments we just received, approved and did not comment upon.

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