Day Three: NHM Tring

On Wednesday I worked again in the bird skins area. The Extinct and Endangered birds are currently being moved to more secure cabinets. While the majority of the collection is now locked away, some of the endangered birds are still in the general cabinets.

It was my job to take inventory of the remaining birds, namely to count how many of each species the museum had, how much space they took and where they were located. Mark said it would be fun as it gave me a chance to look at the collections, and it certainly was! I was pleased to be able to help them with a major rehousing project.

Now, on with the photos:

As well as the endangered birds, this was also an opportunity for me to look at some familiar species found back home in Belize:

I was also shown the large skin collection by Hein. This is the largest specimen:

Ratites are harder to skin than regular birds, and not just because of their size. They are incredibly fatty and removing those layers is extremely time consuming.

Speaking of ratites, I was shown what can only be described as The Great Wall of Cassowary. It is a wall spanning the entire length of a room with sliding doors that is filled with mounted cassowaries, many of which used to belong to the founder of the museum, Lord Rothschild.


About Gina Allnatt

I have just finished a year long traineeship as a Biology Curator at Manchester Museum. I am currently a research and curation volunteer in the Entomology and Botany departments. -Gina Allnatt
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