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Canacoll: A foundation serving the Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids and Nematodes (CNC)


by G. Gibson

Role and Function

The Canacoll Foundation is a not-for-profit corporation (#038362-7) registered under the Canada Not-for-Profit Act. The Foundation’s objectives are “to advance taxonomic research on the Canadian National Collection of Insects, Arachnids and Nematodes” and “to establish and maintain a fund for furtherance of the above mentioned objective”.

As its name implies, the Canadian National collection of Insects, Arachnids and Nematodes (CNC) is Canada’s national collection of insects, arachnids (mites, ticks, spiders) and nematodes (roundworms). It is one of the five largest collections of its kind in the world, containing over 17 million curated specimens, and represents an irreplaceable national biological heritage. The CNC is maintained and developed within the Ottawa Research and Development Centre under the auspices of Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) on the Central Experimental Farm, Ottawa, Ontario. This is accomplished by scientists, biologists, technicians and other individuals that are mostly associated with AAFC, but also with The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) and Natural Resources Canada.

As a non-government foundation, Canacoll advances taxonomic research on the CNC primarily by:

1.  Funding out-of-pocket expenses for short-term visits to the CNC by external specialists from Canada and around the world to identify, curate or otherwise enhance the information content of the collection. As of 2015, Canacoll has funded 486 research grants for a total of $485,865, which amounts to 910 person/weeks of curation.

2.  Maintaining a website that provides information on the CNC, including the activities of individuals working in the CNC regardless of departmental affiliation or position.

In order to accomplish its objectives, the Canacoll Foundation is registered as a charity (#118828219 RR0001) under the Canada Revenue Agency and is entitled to issue receipts for donations for income tax purposes. Donations can be made by contacting the Canacoll Board Chair.

History of Canacoll

How to Apply for a Grant or Become a Canacoll Member

Potential grantees must be nominated by a staff member of the CNC or a member of the Canacoll Foundation and be endorsed by the appropriate Unit Curator of the CNC. Applications for membership can be made by contacting the Canacoll Board.

Our Founder

Dr. Edward C. Becker


Chair: Andrew Bennett
Contact: 613-240-7759