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History of Collecting
Collector and Identifier Abbreviation Key


Collecting Sites

Most of the insect collections from 1896 to 1965 were made on the Wooster campus of the Ohio Agricultural Experiment Station, later known as the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center. Insects were collected or recorded when they caused damage to experimental plantings in the orchards, greenhouses, floral or vegetable gardens, or woody ornamental plots.

Rings operated three black-light traps from 1966 to 1974 to collect moths. One of these was near the barn at OARDC's Snyder Farm, on State Route 250 southeast of the main entrance to OARDC; a second trap was operated in back of Hayden Hall on the OARDC campus; and a third was operated in a residential area at 2438 Christmas Run Blvd., Wooster. These traps were operated to capture and record armyworms and cutworms, but many other species were identified, spread, and deposited in the OARDC Insect Collection.

A systematic and comprehensive survey was initiated in 1997 to collect Lepidoptera in different parts of Wayne County. Eleven collecting sites were chosen to represent different townships of the county and different habitats in which to collect Lepidoptera.

Brown's Lake Bog State Nature Preserve is located in Clinton Township, Section 10, on Brown Road two miles west of Shreve. The unique feature of this wetland site is the acid bog surrounded by a host of pitcher plants. The bog is located in a boggy forest (Andreas, 1989). Most of the moths were collected in the parking lot at a latitude of 4041'17" N and a longitude of 8203'57" W. Both butterflies and moths were collected in bait traps located along the boardwalk 100 yards from the entrance.

Funk Bottoms Wildlife Area is located in Plain Township, Section 25, on State Route 95, one-fourth mile east of Funk. The unique feature of this wetland site is the treeless marsh covering 80 hectares. Most of this area is periodically flooded. There are also moist soil meadows and bottomland hardwoods. Most of the moths were collected in the parking lot just off the gravel road to the barn and residence at a latitude of 4045'06" N and a longitude of 8206'45" W. A bait trap was operated at the edge of the woodland just north of the residence.

Johnson Woods State Nature Preserve is located in Baughman Township, Section 5, on Fox Lake Road, one mile southwest of Marshallville. This is a 200-acre old-growth oak and hickory forest. Most of the moths were collected in the parking lot in the northern part of the woodland at a latitude of 4053'40" N and a longitude of 8144'62" W. The woodland contains 30 species of trees and shrubs. A bait trap was operated in the forest 50 yards west of the parking lot and trapped both moths and butterflies.

Killbuck Marsh Wildlife Area is located in Franklin Township, Section 19, on Shreve-Eastern Road, three miles east of Shreve. This site is on a hill that overlooks hundreds of acres of marshy wetlands, fence-rows, and a small woodlot. A mercury-vapor light was operated at the side of the Headquarters Building of the Area Headquarters at a latitude of 4040'21" N and a longitude of 8158'14" W.

Secrest Arboretum is located on the eastern portion of the Wooster campus of Ohio State University's Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, in Wooster Township, Sections 14 and 15, on Secrest Road, approximately two miles southeast of Wooster. This woodland consists of both native and introduced species of trees and shrubs. The introduced species were planted to determine their hardiness and growth under northeastern Ohio's climate and native pests. The exact site where most moths were collected is 4046'51" N and 8157'25" W. Other moths and butterflies were collected throughout the arboretum.

Shreve Lake Wildlife Area is located in Clinton Township, Section 15, on Critchfield Road, one mile west of Shreve at 4041'22" N and 8202'59" W. This is an open site at the east edge of the lake distantly surrounded by fence-rows and patches of woodland containing oaks, walnut, and willow.

Wooster East. This site was located at the home of Roger A. Downer, 2226 Grandview Avenue, Wooster. This is in the eastern section of Wooster at a latitude of 4049'38" N and a longitude of 8156'02" W. A mercury-vapor light was operated in the backyard from 1999 to 2000. This urban environment boasts arborvitae, ash, black locust, cherry, maple, pine, and spruce. There were also many annual and perennial flowers and shrubs planted as a butterfly garden.

Wooster North. This site was located at the home of Roy W. Rings, 1840 Christmas Run Blvd., Wooster. This is in the northwest part of Wooster. Both black-light traps and bait traps were operated in the backyard at a latitude of 4049'22" N and a longitude of 8156'48" W from 1997 to 1999. The dominant trees, typical of a residential neighborhood, were apple, arborvitae, blue and Norway spruce, Norway maple, wild black cherry, and pin oak. The turf supported many species of grass-inhabiting insects, and caterpillars fed upon many species of annual and perennial flowers. A butterfly garden attracted many species of butterflies, skippers, and day-flying moths.

Wooster Memorial Park, formerly known as Spangler Park, is located in Plain Township, Section 2, on Silver Road, three miles northwest of Wooster at 4048'46" N and 8201'39" W. In addition to a sizable forest of native trees and shrubs, there are many ornamental trees and shrubs. There is a large parking lot and grassy area of approximately 12,000 square yards that is surrounded by elm, sassafras, green ash, hemlock, and shagbark hickory on the north; on the east by white pine and Scots pine; on the west by elm, wild black cherry, Norway spruce, wild blackberry, poison ivy, ragweed, goldenrod, multiflora rose, and elm.

Wayne County Wilderness Center is located in Congress Township, Section 23, on Easton Road, approximately two miles northeast of Congress at 4056'35" N and 8200'16" W. This 80 acres of forest was donated to the Wilderness Center in 1995 and is undeveloped. There are two pine plantations, an old field, and an old oak woods on this property. The former residence was surrounded by plantings of chestnut, blue spruce, silver maple, and tulip tree.

Pee Wee Hollow is the Wooster Boy Scout Camp located on Pleasant Home Road in Congress Township at 4055'27" N and 8201'54" W. The collecting area was at the west side of the end of the access lane. This site was a large open space of approximately 15,000 square yards lined on the north by Scots pine; surrounded on the east by red oak, sugar maple, green ash, shagbark hickory, dogwood, American beech, multiflora rose, and poison ivy; on the south by elm, hawthorn, tulip tree, black locust, pin oak, walnut, ironweed, wild raspberry, ragweed, and grasses; and on the west by elm, pin oak, grasses, ragweed, and poison ivy.

Collecting Techniques

Collecting Butterflies. Butterflies and skippers were collected with standard aerial nets, especially when nectaring at flowers. Some were collected in tropical butterfly traps baited with fermented fruit and sugar.

Collecting Moths. Most moths were collected from a large white bedsheet illuminated with a 175-watt mercury-vapor lamp. The sheet was supported by a tripod of nine-foot aluminum electric-conduit pipes, and the lamp was suspended from the apex of the tripod. Moths were caught in cyanide killing jars as they alighted on the sheet. Microlepidoptera were collected in five-inch shell-vials stoppered with crumpled facial tissues. A drop or two of chloroform was added to the vials just before collecting each moth. Moths were kept in small plastic boxes lined with moist paper-toweling and placed in a freezer overnight. The specimens were then identified on the following day at the Insect Reference Collection Laboratory. Selected specimens were then labeled as to state, county, site, date of collection, collector, and site coordinates taken from a portable geophysical positioning system (GPS).

Rearing. Extensive rearing was done from 1966 to 1970 when lepidopterous larvae were collected from their host plants from the Secrest Arboretum. The larvae were reared in an insectary in small plastic boxes, the bottom of which was lined with four layers of moistened paper-toweling. Two large leaves of their host plant were placed in the rearing containers every other day. Fungous growth was retarded by dipping the host-plant foliage in a solution of Captan fungicide. The fungicide had no effect on the caterpillars as far as could be determined.

Identification. Specimens were identified with the aid of field guides, specialized books, and journals written for that purpose. These included Covell (1984), Ferguson (1971, 1978, 1985), Forbes (1923, 1948, 1954), Freeman (1958), Hodges (1971), Holland (1968), Lafontaine (1987, 1998), Miller (1987), Munroe (1973, 1976), Neunzig (1990), Opler (1992), Poole (1995), Rockburne and Lafontaine (1976), Lafontaine and Poole (1991), and Sargent (1976).