Have a great weekend everyone!
Epic Encounter: Giant Squid and Sperm Whale
In what is one of the most dramatic dioramas in the Museum, a giant squid is caught in the sperm whale’s mouth, its tentacles grasping at the whale’s head, which is actually an oversized snout.
The sperm whale and giant squid diorama in the Irma and Paul Milstein Family Hall of Ocean Life is now celebrating the 10th anniversary of a masterful renovation.
Planning a visit to the American Museum of Natural History?
Download Explorer, the free wayfinding app that makes navigating the world-famous halls of the American Museum of Natural History easier than ever. Use the app on your mobile device and have guided tours, digital exhibits, and a personal GPS in your pocket!
Coming to the American Museum of Natural History with a budding paleontologist? Use the Fossil Treasure Hunt and use clues to find specimens in the Museum’s fossil halls!
Only have an hour? Take the short Highlights tour and fit the full Museum experience into your busy schedule.
It’s Tuesday’s peek into the archives:
A skeletal illustration of a polar bear used in creating the diorama now seen in the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life. (Illustration dated 1920-1933)
View more images from our archives here.
In the not-too-distant future, scientists expect that technological breakthroughs—and availability of genetic data from specimens of extinct species—will provide ways to revive vanished species.
Museum Curator Ross MacPhee discusses the science and ethical considerations of “de-extinction” in this video: http://bit.ly/13449Tt
New research out of the American Museum of Natural History today is the first to provide definitive proof that green algae eat bacteria.
The finding offers a glimpse at how scientists think early organisms acquired free-living chloroplasts, the structures responsible for converting light into food. This event is thought to be a critical first step in the evolution of photosynthetic algae and land plants, which helped raise oxygen levels in Earth’s atmosphere and paved the way for the rise of animals.
Keep reading here.
While much of the Eastern seaboard is getting prepared for the coming of the 17-year periodical cicadas, Manhattanites may miss the show. (These cicadas have virtually never been recorded on this urban island.)
But starting Wednesday, May 22, you can see periodical cicadas on the Upper West Side, here at the Museum. A newly restored display, first exhibited in 1912, will be on view in the Hall of Biodiversity, on the Museum’s first floor.
Outside of Manhattan, cicadas are likely to make real-life appearances in New York City’s other boroughs, says Museum entomologist Lou Sorkin, who has been keeping up with the local emergences. “There have been reports from Queens, Brooklyn, the Bronx, and of course Staten Island in recent weeks,” he reports.
It’s Tuesday’s peek into the archives! This image comes from the Research Library’s Lantern Slide Collection:
Yvette Borup Andrews, wife of explorer Roy Chapman Andrews, feeding bears in Yun Nan Teng-yeuh, China, on the Asiatic Zoological Expedition (1916-1917).
See more photos from the Museum’s archives here.
Did you know? Whales’ flippers, or pectoral fins, share bone structure with the human arm and hand.
In fact, the bones of cetacean flippers are the same kinds of bones as in the human arm, with an upper arm bone, two forearm bones, and hand, wrist, and finger bones. In whales, fingers are elongated and may have additional bones.
Read more on whales’ amazing adaptations here.