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KnikFebruary 5th, 2012, 9:24 pm
East Tennessee

Posts: 2
So, how do you folks save/store your specimens?

I would like to start saving some for later use and am not sure how to go about it.

Thanks in advance.
MartinlfFebruary 5th, 2012, 10:58 pm
Palmyra PA

Posts: 3233
I've been advised to use ethyl alcohol. Many pharmacies sell it. Others may have better suggestions, so I'll defer to our real bug men if they chime in.
"He spread them a yard and a half. 'And every one that got away is this big.'"

--Fred Chappell
GldstrmSamFebruary 6th, 2012, 1:41 am
Fairbanks, Alaska

Posts: 212
I've been advised to use ethyl alcohol.

There is no greater fan of fly fishing than the worm. ~Patrick F. McManus
EntomanFebruary 6th, 2012, 1:51 am
Northern CA & ID

Posts: 2604

Welcome to the forum!

Martinf is right, experts recommend ethyl alcohol and you can get it at drug stores and retailers like Wal-Mart. Hardware stores sell it too, but in cans and there's usually a coloring agent in it, so beware of that source.

Recommended strength is 70% to 90% (the latter being a little harder to find). The best storage is 1 dram glass vials with the plastic stopper caps. Screw caps tend to have a problem with evaporation, so stay away from them if you can. Be sure to label them. The best is a strip of white card stock using a #2 pencil (ink bleeds into the preservative). If you aren't sure what it is at the time, that's OK, just put the date and location. You think you'll remember, but as your collection grows and if you fish a lot of different spots with similar critters, you will get them mixed up. Been there, done that.:) Once they've been positively identified, you can throw away the label and affix a permanent one to the outside if you want.

Personally, the 70% seems to work just fine for long term storage provided you replace it within a few days after the specimens have released their water into the suspension. This is really important when you have a lot of specimens (or a large specimen) in the vial.

Final tip - Make sure that there is no air trapped under the cap. If the vials are moved around a lot, an air bubble can be more damaging than if you had a little pebble in with them.

Tight lines!
"It's not that I find fishing so important, it's just that I find all other endeavors of Man equally unimportant... And not nearly as much fun!" Robert Traver, Anatomy of a Fisherman
KnikFebruary 9th, 2012, 11:31 am
East Tennessee

Posts: 2
Thanks all for the advice, I'm going to look into all the info that has been offered.

I'm sure I'll be posting pics. for help in identification of certain bugs. Really like the sight, the pictures help a ton.

Thanks again, Shannon

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