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Cathy grew up in southern Tasmania, and as a child she used to love wandering around the bush, observing and collecting insects. She recalls always wanting to be an entomologist. She finally achieved that goal some decades after, raising a family of four kids along the way, and finishing a science degree followed by a PhD where she studied the systematics of native geometrid moths supervised by Peter McQuillan. Systematics had to take a back seat while she worked with Tasmanian Department of Agriculture on a project securing market access to Japan for locally grown cherries. This job gave her access to the Department’s large and historical Tasmanian insect collection, which featured collections from such notable Australian entomologists as A.M. Lea and J.W. Evans, both who had worked in the same Department.


Working with collections has now become Cathy’s job as Senior Curator of Zoology at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery (TMAG) in Hobart. The curatorship position is a very diverse one, spanning collection and staff management, and public outreach and education. Curators are also expected to conduct systematic research, enabling Cathy to continue her productive and high-quality research on Australian Geometridae. Zoology at the TMAG has the very ambitious goal to have representatives every animal species in Tasmania held in the Museum collections. As part of achieving that goal the Museum conducts “Expeditions of Discovery” to remote and poorly collected areas of Tasmania almost every year.


For Cathy this has resulted in finding many new lepidopteran species, faunal records and rarities, and much of Cathy’s time is now spent preparing and identifying moth specimens from this field work. Cathy sees MABA as an association that can bring together everyone who is interested in our diverse and fascinating Lepidoptera, highlighting how important our fauna is globally, with its diversity and high level of endemicity. She hopes it will provide a platform for the sharing of knowledge on our moths and butterflies both locally and internationally.

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