2017 Registration Open for Dallas class

Applications are now being accepted for the 2017 Master Volunteer Entomology Specialist class to be held at the Texas A&M AgriLife Center at Dallas.

This year’s host is Dr. Mike Merchant, urban entomology specialist at the Dallas center, along with co-host and fellow agricultural entomologist Dr. Allen Knutson.  This year’s program is a very packed three full days of training, from 1:00 pm Monday September 18, to noon on Thursday, September 21.  Cost for the program is only $200 and will include some meals, snacks, and entomology supplies (Bugkit) for collecting and observing insects.

Applications will be screened and you should know by mid-August whether you have been accepted for this year’s class.  If you are interested in applying, please click here to fill out the short application form.


Transportation. We rely on participants to provide their own transportation for travel to local insect collecting and possible field trip sites.  Participant should be prepared for outdoor activity and dressed appropriately.  We recommend long pants and shoes with socks, long sleeved shirt, sunscreen, insect repellent, flashlights or headlamp, and any other personal items you require.

Auditing the Class. Any volunteer who has previously completed the MVES training and would like to audit an individual class day this year, will be charged a $20 fee per day which only applies to T and Wednesday classes ($40 for two days) to cover costs of meals, snacks and drinks (no collecting supplies). Please pre-register for the number of days that you plan to attend.  Only 5 auditing slots each day are available.***

Monday, September 18th
1-1:30 Welcome, mixer, and introductions.
1:30-3:00 Introduction to Insects and Insect Orders [Merchant]
3:00-3:15 Break
3:15-5:30 Additional Orders- Projector and Table Specimens – lesson in microscopy – keying out exercise [Knutson]
Dinner On the town on your own

Tuesday, September 19th
8:00-8:45 What’s in Your Bugkit? [Merchant]
8:45-9:45 Biological control of insects & weeds [Knutson]
9:45-10:00 Break
10:00-11:45 Controlling insects: IPM and toxicology [Merchant]
11:45-12:30 Lunch [catered]
12:30-2:30 Insect pests of trees and shrubs [Vafaie]
2:30-3:30 Group picture, gather collecting supplies, travel to Heard Museum [Meet Angela Barron, Heard Museum Ed Director]
3:30-4:30 Butterfly gardening presentation [Schuchart]
4:30-6:30 Collecting at Heard [Staff]
6:30-7:30 Dinner (catered)
7:30-8:30 Insect photography and use of light box [Vafaie]
8:30-whenever Black light Collecting

Wednesday, September 20th
8:30-10:30 Specimen preparation/identification [Staff]
10:30-12:00 Solitary bees and pollinator conservation [Karen Wright]
12:00-12:45 Lunch [catered]
12:45-1:15 Secret life of mosquitoes [Merchant]
1:15-2:00 Insects in vegetable gardens [Knutson]
2:00-2:15 Break
2:15-2:45 Online resources for entomology [Merchant]
2:45-3:15 Travel to City of Plano (COP) Environmental Education Center
3:15-5:30 Plano EEC and community gardens: tour and collecting [Hoffer, COP]
6:30  Dinner Out [TBA]

Thursday, September 21st
8:00-9:30 Bees, Beekeeping and honey tasting [Rowe]
9:30-10:00 The scientific method and pest control [Merchant]
10:00-10:15 Break
10:15-11:15 Urban and structural pests [Merchant]
11:30-12:30 Where to from here? Putting your knowledge to work and earning your Specialist pin [Brown, Ackley, Meagher]
12:30 Evaluations and goodbyes

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