The Lep Course: A Comprehensive Introduction to Lepidoptera Identification and Classification

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 since 4 Sept 2009 


2014 dates: 14- 23 August, 2014. Link to the SWRS site for announcement and application forms. Be sure and check out the facebook page for past courses (below)!

Details and photos from previous courses

Held at the SouthWest Research Station (SWRS) in the Chirichahua Mountains in SE Arizona (a 2 1/2 hour drive from Tucson), the focus of the lep course is to train graduate students, post-docs, faculty, and serious citizen-scientists in the classification and identification of adult lepidoptera and their larvae.

Topics to be covered include an extensive introduction into adult and larval morphology with a focus on taxonomically-important traits, extensive field work on both adults and larvae, collecting and curatoral techniques, genitalic dissection and preparation, larval classification, use (and abuse) of DNA bar coding, and general issues in lepidoptera systematics, ecology, and evolution.


With its extensive series of Sky-Island mountain ranges, SE Arizona has the highest lepidoptera diversity in the US. With low desert scrub, oak and mixed oak-pine woodland, lush riparian, juniper, Douglas fir, and mountain meadow habitats all within a 40 minute drive from the station, the SWRS is an ideal location from which to sample this diversity (of both habitats and species).

Location and Directions to the SWRS.