Pollen trap design
The EPMP will use a standard "Tauber style" trap (Tauber, 1974) similar in basic design to the one described by Hicks and Hyvärinen (1986) allowing the Programme to build on the long records which already exist.
The minimum requirements for the trap are a 5cm diameter hole with a collar around it which sheds rain and isolates the trap from the surrounding vegetation (see Fig. 1). The exact size, shape and slope of the collar is not specified. The shape and capacity of the receptacle beneath the collar is not important other than that it should be large enough to contain the expected annual rainfall (a container of 2 - 3 litres has been found to be adequate by workers already using this kind of trap), but the fit between the two must be tight to prevent water seeping in below the collar. The material from which the trap is made is not significant other than it must be sufficiently resistant to remain in the field for a full calendar year without cracking.
It is hoped that participants in the EPMP will wish to experiment with other types of traps and variations on the standard trap model (e.g. using a larger hole, using acetate wool e.g. Cundill, 1986), covering the trap with a net to avoid pitfall animals and other debris, inserting a sieve below the hole) but that this experimentation should be used adjacent to the standard trap and the results compared.
Fig. 1: Basic pollen trap designs