NOT the collecting debate :-)

Chris Raper triocomp at
Mon Jun 21 12:02:22 EDT 1999


The recent discussions about NABA and the pro/anti collecting debate
go me thinking. So I thought I would post the idea here and see what
you think.

My question is - are children who are allowed to collect butterfies
more likely to grow into more serious entomologists - either
professional or amateur? 

I started collecting insects in match-boxes when I was a child and my
interest has since developed from butterfly collecting to photograhphy
through to moth trapping, conservation work, invertebrate recording &
monitoring and more recently I have started to become interested in
diptera & parasitic hymenoptera - where collecting is an essential
part of getting to grips with the groups. I haven't collected
butterflies in the UK since I was a kid and I have all but stopped
taking moth vouchers - but I still believe that I wouldn't be as
interested in general entomology if I hadn't collected insects as a

My worry is that although butterfly 'watchers' are good for butterfly
conservation, 'entomology' as a hobby still needs people who are going
to go further and progress to the, more difficult groups like moths,
flies and wasps. 

What do you think?

Chris R.

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