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Development of the IPI specimen archive - PH0522

To establish an insect biodiversity archive to preserve 50,000 specimens
collected during research funded under the UK Insect Pollinators initiative (IPI), and make these
available for future research. The archive represents a unique
internationally significant resource for research into insect biodiversity, and pollinators specifically,
and provides highly-resolved baseline sampling for tracking of changes in populations and diversity
through time. Preserving this one-off resource requires that the dry-pinned specimens that make up most of the archive material are processed rapidly to avoid degradation – both through
disipation of specimens due to lack of appropriate storage space, and degradation of key biological
molecules (such as DNA and pesticide residues). The archive specimens will be cryopreserved at -
80°C and managed in perpetuity by the Natural History Museum, London (NHM), who will provide
equipment and ongoing costs. This project will therefore help to secure the legacy of the IPI and
maximise future research and policy impact.
1. To generate an IPI specimen archive, by rapid transfer of specimens from IPI-funded institutions
to the Natural History Museum, London for long term storage at -80°C.
2. To generate an IPI specimen database within the NHM’s existing specimen management
system, allowing public access to specimen metadata.
3. To cross-reference records in the IPI specimen database to corresponding IPI datasets or
metadata records deposited into the NERC EIDC.
4. To promote use of the archive.
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2015

To: 2016

Cost: £44,994
Contractor / Funded Organisations
University of Edinburgh
Bee Diseases              
Bee Pests              
Fields of Study
Plant Health