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best method for killing bugs for macrography?

 
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albert



Joined: 27 Aug 2008
Posts: 22
Location: new york city

PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 9:35 am    Post subject: best method for killing bugs for macrography? Reply with quote

or narcotizing them?

tx,

albert
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rjlittlefield
Site Admin


Joined: 01 Aug 2006
Posts: 19970
Location: Richland, Washington State, USA

PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 10:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Try freezing first. That's completely safe for you and will kill most subjects without altering their colors or structures. Some are freeze resistant and need lower temperatures and/or longer exposure. Condensation will be an issue. Be sure to let your subjects sit long enough to dry off after coming out of the freezer, unless of course you want that appearance of dewdrops.

CO2 (carbon dioxide) will anesthetize some species, but there are wide variations in its effectiveness.

If you want chemical killing agents, there's a wide variety. Ethyl acetate is one that's commonly used, works quickly, and is pretty safe for humans. But you can't buy it at the corner drug or hardware store. Acetone works, as does lighter fluid. There's a tendency for chemical agents to make specimens stiff and hard to work with.

Try freezing first.

--Rik
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Harold Gough



Joined: 09 Mar 2008
Posts: 5787
Location: Reading, Berkshire, England

PostPosted: Tue Sep 16, 2008 10:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The standard for butterflies in the old days, when collecting was respectable, was cyanide. An available source of hydrogen cyanide is by crushing the leaves of cherry laurel inside a glass jar, etc. The moisture also keeps the dead insects "relaxed".

If using ethyl acetate beware of use in a confined space as the fumes are quite intoxicating.

Harold
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