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Re: NFC: Field Trip to K.U. (fwd)

WOW The Carolina Parakeet and Ivory Billed woodpecker ...VERY COOL

So whats the theory on the keets again ? Id always heard it was a hunting

How about a carolina Parakeet Clone :)

On Wed, 9 Feb 2000 09:15:52 -0600 (CST) mcclurg luke e    
<mcclurgl at washburn_edu> writes:
> Our Vertebrate Zoology class made and interesting trip to Lawrence, 
> KS
> yesterday and the Natural History Museum run by Kansas University.  
> This
> was a "behind the scenes" tour where we were able to look at the 
> processes
> and techniques for preserving fishes and birds. (next week we see 
> the herp
> dept.) 
> Our tour guide was Kate Shaw, Collections Curator for the 
> Ichthyology
> Dept., and one time NANFA member. (sorry, don't know Ms. Shaw's 
> current
> membership status)  We were shown examples of several Etheostoma 
> species
> that had been "cleared and stained".  An interesting process to say 
> the
> least where the flesh of a fish is soaked until it is transparent so 
> that
> the bones and cartilage are clearly seen.  These are stained with 
> various
> pigments to highlight them.  We also saw bone collections, including 
> some
> rather large Alligator Gar heads collected many years ago in the 
> Gulf
> region.  We were also given a demonstration of the storage of tissue
> samples and also the computer they now use to do DNA sequencing. 
> (it's
> sweet to say the least, saves major time and stress from doing it 
> the old
> way)
> Then it was off to the preserved collection.  This has been stored 
> in a
> fireproof addition due to the 70% ethanol that is used to preserve 
> the
> specimens.  This was a huge collection!  I went down approximately 6 
> isles
> each about 8 feet high and 20 feet long and never go out  of the
> cyprininds!  Kate showed us specimens of two of the federally listed
> Kansas species, the Neosho Madtom and the Topeka Shiner and she 
> talked how
> the fish fauna had changed in the state over the last hundred years 
> or
> so.  After this, we had a real treat when we shown the coelacanth
> specimen.  Too cool!  It may be the only chance I ever get to see 
> one up
> close.  There were also a couple of lungfish in the vat with it.  
> All very
> interesting.
> After Kate's tour, were were taken through the ornithology dept.  
> Not as
> exciting to me as ichthyology, but interesting never the less.  The
> saddest moment was when we were shown one of the specimens of the 
> now
> extinct Carolina Parakeet.  What a beautiful bird it was!  
> Unfortunately,
> it is believed that diseased brought over along with old world 
> parrots (as
> pets) could have been the main culprit in eliminating this species.  
> On a
> much more cheery note, we were told that recently two possible 
> specimens
> of the Ivory Billed Woodpecker were sighted in Mississippi.  While
> unconfirmed, this would be good news as this species was thought to 
> be
> extinct.  Researchers are there right now trying to confirm the
> sighting.  Also, it turns out that a few individuals are still alive 
> in
> Cuba, so maybe there is some hope for this species.
> All in all it was a fascinating trip and I hope to go back someday 
> when I
> have more time to "browse".  :)
> Luke McClurg

Robert Rice
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