“The Creator would appear as endowed with a passion for stars, on the one hand, and for beetles on the other”
-J.B.S. Haldane, 1945
There is probably no task for a taxonomist that is more daunting, and perhaps more exciting, than to catalogue the great diversity of beetles. There are more species of beetles on the planet than any other group of animals. Dr Chris Reid is a research scientist at the Australian Museum specialising in Australasian beetle fauna.
Growing up in Belfast Ireland, a childhood fascination for fly catching led him to pursuing a career as an entomologist that would take him across the other side of the globe. As a scientist he has found himself explaining complex beetle genitals to the media, and training local entomologists in Papua New Guinea, amongst other feats of research and exploration.
In an interview with in situ Science Chris shares with us the rewards of being an insect collector from discovering new species, to visiting ‘old friends’, to using his knowledge to improve agricultural practices. To find out more about Chris’ research visit the Australian Museum website.
Special thanks to the Australian Museum Science Festival for help putting together this podcast.