Text Size:   A+ A- A   •   Text Only
Site Image
ODA Museum History
The ODA Insect Museum was started in 1945 by the Oregon Legislature, which created an insect survey and detection unit in the ODA Plant Division. The first entomologist hired for this unit, John E. Davis, housed the new collection in a single 24-drawer cabinet and numerous Schmitt boxes. Our second entomologist, F.P. "Pete" Larson, was hired in 1949 and added specimens to the collection, mostly from ultraviolet ("black light") traps. It was not until 1954 that another insect storage cabinet was purchased. The collection greatly expanded after 1955, due to  the avid collecting and curatorial efforts of Kenneth J. Goeden, our third entomologist, hired in that year. Many other staff have added insects to the collection.
Until 1968, the activities of ODA entomologists were directed almost exclusively to survey and detection. At that time, Eric M. Fisher filled a full time taxonomist/curator position. Richard L. Westcott assumed this position in 1969, followed by James R. LaBonte in 2004. This position has enabled the museum to be better maintained, curated, and significantly enlarged, while simultaneously providing much needed taxonomic support for the expanding survey, detection, nursery inspection, and identification (provided to other agencies and the public) activities. Further taxonomic support has been provided by other ODA staff.