IPM Working Group Meeting 2018 PROGRAM ANNOUNCEMENT

March 14 – 16, 2018

Sponsored by Harvard University Herbaria, the Museum of Comparative Zoology, and the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology

The host for this year’s meeting are three of Harvard University’s museums – Harvard University Herbaria, Museum of Comparative Zoology, and Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology. While IPM has been a long-time component of these historic museums’ preventive conservation programs, this is their first time hosting the IPM Working Group (IPM-WG). We are grateful for their willingness to provide a welcome meeting space. 

As always, the IPM-WG meetings are designed to help institutions with active IPM programs by bringing individuals together to tackle projects related to particular pest-related challenges.  All information resulting from these collaborations are placed on the MuseumPest.net website for the benefit of the cultural heritage community. 

The program is scheduled for 2.5 days, beginning the afternoon of March 14th, with optional tours held across several locations within Harvard University, including collections tours where participants will have the opportunity to take a look behind-the-scenes.

The following two days (March 15-16) will revert to the traditional IPM-WG schedule focusing on further development of the online content for the MuseumPest.net website.  Short 5-10 minute presentations by participants on IPM-related activities and/or projects at their home institutions are interspersed with the work sessions.  If you would like to present to the group, please indicate your interest when you RSVP for the meeting. 

There is no fee for attending the program; however, participants are responsible for their own travel, room, and board.  Additionally, participants are expected to take on an assignment that will result in content for the MuseumPests.net website. The two-and-a-half-day program is by invitation only as space is limited. 

To request a spot please RSVP by e-mailing: chair@museumpests.net including: “IPM-WG 2018 Meeting” in the subject line. Your request must include:

Address (Company/institution)
Phone #

RSVP’s will be accepted through March 1st, 2018 or until spots are filled.  Priority will be given to returning participants on a first-come, first-served basis and to new participants who are actively involved in an IPM program in their institution.  

Please note: The IPM-WG meetings do not teach IPM and are only appropriate for individuals working with an active IPM program.  For more information on establishing a program, please consult the MuseumPests.net website. 

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Historic New England shares innovative approach to pest management

On November 16, Historic New England’s Haverhill, Massachusetts-based collection services team hosted a sold-out program on Integrated Pest Management (IPM) for museum professionals, interested members, and colleagues from all over New England.

The presentations featured entomologist Pat Kelley, vice president of Insects Limited, LLC, and Adam Osgood, collections technician for Historic New England. Pat presented a fascinating look at the history of IPM and its application in museum settings. He followed that with a riveting, up-close summary of our top insect pests, their behavior, and the damage to watch for, using real specimens, microscopes, and an identification quiz.

Adam’s presentation covered the new IPM initiatives that Historic New England implemented this season, including increased staff time, innovative strategies, and the testing of new products. Many of these new efforts were inspired by what Adam learned at the International IPM Conference held at the Louvre Museum in Paris in September 2016.

These experimental initiatives include an “IPM Champion” program, in which pheromone trap monitoring and data consolidation are used to identify pest activity, along with targeted, informed cleaning to remediate the problem. Historic New England designated staff who were trained in IPM practice, proper collection handling, and preventive conservation of objects to execute this program.

Another innovative tactic Adam tested this season was the use of insecticide-impregnated mosquito netting as a barrier against museum pests. This technology is used effectively on a global scale in developing nations to control mosquito-borne illnesses. Early results from the netting combined with entomological lab testing by Pat Kelley show great potential against museum pests. Historic New England’s findings on this material represent the first documented effective use of the product for this purpose in the United States and probably the first successful application against wood-boring beetle species internationally.

The program also included three small-group breakout sessions. Nicole Chalfant, collection manager for Historic New England, gave a behind-the-scenes look into our collection storage, highlighting parts where IPM is challenging. Pat ran a workshop on trap monitoring, and Adam led a tour of the Controlled Atmosphere Treatment facility including an up-close look at actual collection items with pest damage.

The capacity crowd of fifty was lively and engaged, affirming that Historic New England remains a leader in IPM for the region.

This information is re-posted from the Historic New England Blog with permission 

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