Beetlemania: How a Met student spent his summer vacation

e-Connections Post The Met Sacramento

The Met Sacramento High School student Noah Crockette spent two weeks in June collecting insects at the Toucan Ridge Ecology and Education Society (TREES) field station located in the Mayan Mountains rainforest.

Crockette was invited to participate in the bug-collecting project by Fran Keller of UC Davis’ Bohart Museum of Entomology. Crockette has been volunteering with the museum for four years and last year worked as an intern for UCD’s Entomology Department.

Throughout the two weeks, Crockette collected moths, beetles and other bugs — often working until after midnight — and trudged through the jungle in the rain to survey reptiles and amphibians.

“I don’t think I ever saw the smile leave his face during the entire trip,” Keller wrote in the Bohart’s newsletter, “except when he was working on developing a pain index and intentionally got stung by a bullet ant and a paper wasp.”

Crockette is now back in Davis sorting his samples and identifying specimens. Says Keller: “I am glad I was able to act as a mentor in Belize for someone who I think will be an extraordinary future entomologist.”