Saturday, April 28, 2007

Dr. Brian Fisher, Entomologist

Last night I had the pleasure of meeting Brian Fisher, an expert on Ants. How funny it is that I'd just read the article about the leaf cutter ants of Sao Paulo!
I first learned of Brian's work a few years back when he curated an exhibit at the Academy of Sciences in San Francisco. It was a comprehensive collection of live ant colonies, including a colony army ants so fierce they can bring down animals larger than humans. I must admit, I never looked at ants the same afterwards. They are truly worth looking at closely, with their diverse adaptations that make each one unique, and leave you to wonder how we could all come from the same planet.
Brian is currently working on a book and has collaborated on a website with maps, articles and photographs on ants. He has written more articles on ants than I can count, available to download from the California Academy of Sciences. He also is working on survey where people can catalogue their finds to create a map on the different species found in the Bay Area. Brian admitted he loves his work so much he wants everyone to share his information, but recently someone stole some information on the web and claimed it as their own. Brian has to date discovered over 800 species of ants in his explorations. And he's a nice guy, so if you use any of his work, make sure you give him the credit and link back to him so he can continue the research!

Check out AntWeb

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