Dimler donates late father's insect collection
Laurel Dimler, assistant professor of nursing, recently donated to Minot State University a modest, but scientifically important insect collection of her late father, Carl Christopherson, long time biology teacher at Stanley High School. The collection consists primarily of butterflies from the North Dakota Badlands, northwestern North Dakota and the North American Arctic, where Christopherson often traveled with MSU science professor Ron Royer.
Several hundred specimens, many representing rarely encountered arctic species, will be integrated into the university's insect collection under the guidance of Guy Hanley, science instructor and Cyril Moore Science Center collections curator.
"Carl was a great guy, who dearly loved the high latitudes," said Royer, recalling an expedition he took with Christopherson in 1993 to Coppermine (Kugluktuk) in the Northwest Territories of Canada.
Hanley indicated that "although some specimens are damaged or of common, local species, most are valuable additions to the Cyril Moore Science Center Museum."
Royer emphasized the scientific importance of Christopherson's specimens, which will provide not only a physical record of species distributions, but the possibility of acquiring genetic material for taxonomic research.
"You can't get DNA out of a photograph," Royer quipped.