Biologist Gives Valuable Insect Collection to Costa Rican University

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    The Costa Rica News (TCRN) – More than 4,000 specimens of insects collected in countries on five continents, including the world’s largest spider, are part of the collection formed over 62 years by the American biologist Richard Whitten and his wife Margaret, which they have decided to donate to the University of Costa Rica.

    “Leaving this collection is like leaving my children, but I wanted to donate it to the University of Costa Rica,” Richard Whitten told The Associated Press. The couple has resided in Costa Rica for 16 years.

    The curator and professor at the School of Biology, Ricardo Murillo said that this collection is “invaluable” because it has specimens from places as diverse as Indo-Malay archipelago or the North Pole, also including Goliath Tarantula (Theraphosa blondi), the largest in the world and found in the jungles of Brazil.

    “Richard tried to collect the most impressive of the group of terrestrial arthropods,” said Murillo. In the exhibition there are striking giant beetles with metallic colors, large insects that camouflage themselves as branches of trees, the beautiful morpho butterflies and other strange specimens.

    The biologist says this is the largest and most diverse collections available, so it will be of benefit to researchers across the region. In addition, the exhibition was installed in such a way that can be easily mobilized to appear in other parts of the country, even other Central American nations.

    “We wanted to have the collection in a place where insects were well preserved, and the University of Costa Rica is very happy to display it,” Whitten said.

    The Costa Rica News (TCRN)

    San Jose Costa Rica

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