"The International Symposium on 'Diversity and Conservation of Fireflies'" took place from 26 to 28 August 2008 at the Botanic Resort, Queen Sirikit Botanic Garden, Mae Rim, Chiang Mai. The Symposium, which was held to honor the 76th birthday anniversary of Her Majesty Queen Srikit brought together a group of firefly experts and naturalists. Over 100 participants from 16 countries, including 20 speakers with prepared papers and 7 poster presentations attended the event.
During the Symposium, the participants visited the Entomology Section to observe activities of the firefly rearing project; and the TIGER Project.
About 50 active participants met in the afternoon of the last day of the Symposium for 'the Second Firefly Network Meeting', chaired by Dr. Chaweewan Hutacharern and Dr. Raphael de Cock. Many subjects of research interest were brought up to discuss for potential collaborations. At the end of the meeting, the participants voted for Malaysia to host the next meeting in 2010.
The 3-day Symposium has proved to be a great success. The Excursion to see synchronous fireflies at Amphawa, Samut Songkram was also a highlight of the Symposium.
The project "Insect Biodiversity and Conservation in Thailand" is a collaborative project between QSBG and the NHM (UK) hosted at QSBG and funded by the Darwin Initiative (UK). The project aims to establish a national depository and identification facility for insects in Thailand, these facilities being an important prerequisite for generating the biological information needed for effective biodiversity conservation of insects in Thailand. The project is contributing to developing the entomology group at QSBG based on collections of insects as well as the accumulation of relevant literature, formation of databases, training of local staff and implementation of research programmes in collaboration with two universities. Collection efforts are based upon collection sites in Doi Inthanon National Park (DINP) and from the surrounds of QSBG, with particular attention paid to the families Culicidae (mosquitoes) and Simuliidae (blackflies). One of the products of this project is a searchable specimen database currently managing about 6 000 Mosquito and Blackfly specimens.