December 20, 2017 by Mary Erickson from Canada
It’s official, I am now in a scientific publication. I checked my year book and nowhere does it say “most likely to be in a scientific publication”. Not only that but I’m pretty sure that my hour of collecting leaf litter was when one of the new beetle species was discovered, or maybe not but that’s my version.
The event is memorable, Menno told us that we would be picking up piles of “stuff” from the jungle floor and I was thinking “what the heck”. And we couldn’t pick it up just anywhere there were certain locations, the base of trees, off the walking track. It wasn’t until he offered gloves that I became enthusiastic, ok that might be a bit of an exaggeration, the gloves are what made me even consider it. I’m not a scientist, I don’t (or at least didn’t up until then) pick up things off the ground and I had no idea what treasures would be gleaned from dirt and leaves. I got into it actually and ensured I put in the correct collection bag and was happy to sift it until my arms got tired, then I whined. To think that little itty bitty beetle may have been just sitting there waiting to be discovered. So fast forward almost three months later and I’m emailing everyone I know a copy of the article, highlighting my name, and waiting for the local press to call asking for an interview.
I am a Citizen Scientist who actually saw something that only 12 other people had ever seen in October of 2017. Pretty cool, take that year book!