Night at the Museum!
November 12, 2011
By Alison Liou
In celebration of Halloween, the Harvard Undergraduate Biological Sciences Society (HUBSS) held their annual Night at the Museum at the Harvard Museum of Natural History. The event brought frozen yogurt, mochi ice cream, a scavenger hunt, raffle prizes, and around 150 excited undergraduate students to the exquisite and extensive collections of the museum in an “all-around celebration of science”. In addition to after-hours access to the museum exhibits—which include exhibits on the New England Forests, Arthropods, African Wildlife, Mammals, Evolution, Glass Flowers, Prehistoric Creatures, Horns and Antlers, Coloration in Animals, and Global Climate Change—, the event also included exclusive tours of the ornithology collection lead by curatorial assistant Katherine Eldridge, and a talk on reptiles by Martha Muñoz. Both women captivated the audience’s attention as undergraduates got a glimpse into their work and the museum “behind-the-scenes”. The best part for me? Getting to examine up-close preserved, full-sized Gila monster and python skins.
Some interesting facts from the Night at the Museum:
1. The biggest egg in the museum is that of the extinct elephant bird
2. The Irish Elk, which is actually a deer, was the largest deer species to have ever lived
3. The oldest bird in the ornithology collection is a Hawaiian honeycreeper from the 1700s
4. The ornithology collection also houses George Washington’s pheasants and the only remaining stuffed bird from the Lewis and Clark expeditions
5. The mastadon in the museum cost $3000 and was acquired by Professor John White Webster in the 1800s, who later received much public attention when he was charged with the murder of Dr. George Parkman, one of the richest citizen of Boston, in a highly sensational trial
Be sure to look out for and attend Night at the Museum next fall!
Subscribe to our Newsletter!