Entomologists use Malaise traps in biodiversity surveys because of their potential for catching many taxa of airborne insects. This unique trap has three applications - it stands on the ground, hangs above the ground, and floats on water, if flotation devices such as empty soda bottles are added to the 4 corners of the trap.
The trap is self-supported, freestanding, and can be repositioned quickly. A framework of shock-corded, lightweight fiberglass support poles permits quick assembly. Simply hook the clips onto the poles provided. This easy assembly feature is a valuable time-saver for those who need to deploy several Malaise traps or whose time in the field is limited. No additional support poles or guy ropes are required.
The trap is configured with cross baffles so that flying insects are collected from four sides, making wind direction and exposure to sunlight less of a concern when considering trap placement and orientation.
This trap is fabricated with a white roof,(108 x 32 mesh/square inch),and black Polyester no-see-um fabric (96 x 26 mesh/square inch) to catch minute insects, including parasitic wasps. The interception area is 165 x 110 centimeters (5.4 x 3.6 ft). If trays with killing agents or ground cloths filled with preservative are placed underneath this area, the trap also functions to a limited degree as a flight-intercept trap (FIT) or window trap, sampling specimens (i.e. some beetles) that drop or fly down after hitting an obstruction. The catch is easily removed by unscrewing the collecting bottle from the trap's connecting ring.
A mesh ventilation window on the collecting head to optimize the catch is included. Insect drop-off is accelerated if Pyrethroids are applied to this ventilation window. Since Pyrethroids are UV unstable, treatment should be repeated about once a week. A removable "moth excluder" (2 x 2 mesh/square inch) at the collecting head entrance prevents entry of large insects such as Lepidoptera or dragonflies. A bottom collector 2892 (sold separately) can be tied underneath the trap to preserve flying insects that drop when hitting barriers (i.e. Coleoptera).
Suspended in the air, the trap becomes an aerial Malaise trap. When hung from trees, it can be elevated to any height to avoid obstacles in natural insect flyways such as high brush or grass. With loops sewn onto the trap, several traps can be daisy-chained to sample all habitats from ground level to canopy at the same time.
These lightweight traps can even be hung in series from a weather balloon to sample insects flying above the canopy.
Five tent pegs, two support poles 9.8 ft. (300 cm), three 500 ml polyethylene collecting bottles, and Nylon carrying bag are included. Dimensions are 3.6 ft. high by 3.6 ft. across (110 cm). Weight with all accessories is 2.9 lbs. (1.3 kg).