The UPLB Museum of Natural History participated in the Philippine Rice Research Institute’s (PHILRICE) rice biodiversity exhibit at the agency’s Rice Museum in Muñoz, Nueva Ecija which opened last 16 July 2015. The Rice Museum’s theme this year is “Colors of Rice” and featured exhibits delving on the wonderful gamut of colors associated with rice varieties from different places in the country.

Museum staff James DV. Alvarez, Jeremy Carlo B. Naredo and Michelle D. Alejado attended the said event and brought 76 rice insect specimens to show how important insects are in the life cycle of the rice plant. This was the also the first time that the Museum was invited to put up a display by PhilRice.

“When we planned including rice biodiversity in this year’s exhibit, the first thing that came into our minds was to invite the Museum because we know that [they] have plenty of specimens which can be displayed,” Ms. Sophia Cuevas, Junior Curator of the Rice Museum, said in an interview.

This is the third time that the Rice Museum has held an exhibit and is hoping that many people will be able learn more and appreciate the world of rice. For the Rice Museum, having more partners in their education programs is a welcome development. “It is exciting to work with people who are very much willing to help us and share their knowledge like the people from Museum,” Ms. Cuevas added.

The Museum’s installation showcases the many insects commonly found in the rice fields. It is divided into two sections, the “Enemies” and the “Friends” of rice. The first section include insects that are considered as pests of the rice plant. On the other hand, second section shows the insects which are beneficial to the plant’s growth.

The “Colors of Rice” exhibit, a collaboration of PhilRice’s Rice Chemistry and Food Sciences Division, Genetic Resources Division, Golden Rice Project, and the UPLB Museum of Natural History, will run for several months and will be on display until February 2016.

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