One goal of ABOL is to promote taxonomic knowledge. What could be more obvious than participate in the ÖEG insect camp. For this reason, a BioBlitze took place for the first time this year apart from days of biodiversity. The four-day camp was from 23.6. until 26.6. in the Nature Reserve Leiser Berge in Lower Austria. More than 40 entomologists – both experts and motivated students – took part. Arthropod groups such as beetles, butterflies, hymenoptera, bugs, cicadas, but also spiders and millipedes were collected. In addition to nets, exhausters, leaf suckers and soil sieves, a wide variety of light traps were used during the night. The evenings were also used to determine and to be together comfortably. As a finale, there was a big barbecue together on the last evening.
In addition to morphological identification, the participants were also introduced to DNA-based identification approaches. Interest in DNA barcoding was high among young entomologists. In this ABOL BioBlitz, a malaise trap was set up for the first time in order to expand the species list using metabarcoding.
The Leiser Berge were extraordinarily rich in insect species and abundances. The weather conditions were ideal, especially for flying insects. We are eagerly awaiting the evaluations and re-determinations of the entomologists, as well as the results of the DNA samples.
We would like to say a big thank you for the great organization and excellent catering – especially to Elisabeth Huber from ÖEG, the team from the Nature Reserve Leiser Berge and the team from the Youth Center Oberleis! Thanks also go to all participants and those interested in the ABOL-BioBlitz. It was a great pleasure for us to be able to participate in the insect camp this year!