Our volunteers dedicate an amazing amount of time and energy to the Museum. As a small gesture of thanks, we arranged a field trip to visit our partners at the UC Santa Cruz Museum of Natural History Collections (MNHC). This was a rare opportunity to view their collections, which are arranged for research and education rather than for public display.
During yesterday’s field trip, curator Chris Lay treated our staff and volunteers to a look at exotic butterflies, endemic beetles, and a variety of bird, mammal, and plant specimens. We learned about the different methods that are used to prepare specimens to add to the collections, from pinning bugs to traditional taxidermy. An intern even shared the intricacies of a method of freeze-drying that was developed by local resident Richard Gurnee, who prepared many of the life-like specimens that we hold in our own collection.
For more information about the UCSC MNHC, please visit http://mnhc.ucsc.edu/