Curator: Evandson José dos Anjos Silva
The University of the State of Mato Grosso, UNEMAT, is currently in the process of implementing a Zoological Collection of Insects, initially consisting of families of bees and wasps from the Neotropical region. Other groups of insects will be considered for inclusion into the collection at a later date. This is an attempt to make the Collection a regional reference, including specimens from the Amazon, the Cerrado, the section of the Pantanal within Mato Grosso, as well as the Vale do Guaporé and the Vale do Araguia. Currently, the collection consists of around 5000 examples of orchid bees (Hymenoptera: Apidae: Euglossini) and around 1000 wasp specimens (Hymenoptera: Vespoidea), which are still in the process of being listed. The stingless native bees are in the process of being studied; a meliponary being created to aid taxonomy and ecological work. The inventory has registered holotypes of more than 20 new species of Euglossine bees, still unknown to science and still in the taxonomic description phase, it being very likely that the same process will go ahead for the solitary and social wasps gathered across the state. The collection will be housed in the Neotropical Laboratory of Bees and Wasps (Cáceres Campus), soon to be created at UNEMAT; the holotypes being opportunely deposited at various museums across Brazil. A professor, a masters degree student, four biologists and three undergraduates make up the laboratory team, relying on additional support from researches at the University of São Paulo (USP), Universidade Estadual Paulista Júlio de Mesquita Filho UNESP, the São Carlos Federal University (UFSCar), the Federal University of Feira de Santana (UEFS), and the Federal University of Mato Grosso (UFMT).