Thanks to a grant from the National Science Foundation, the Bird Collection has undergone a critical facilities upgrade with the installation of new cabinets and a compactor system. This gives us space we desperately needed. We are currently moving, rearranging, and re-housing the whole collection into and around this new space. We continue to occupy our old, 1980s cabinets and compactor space; this new addition was put into to space we obtained during the museum expansion. It is so cool. We had a hard time believing just how many cabinets could be squeezed into that space. Have a look at some photos…
We had 28 cabinets in this space. They were all full (as were all our other cabinets), and we’d resorted to putting skins and skeletons into boxes, where they were not accessible or properly housed.
Why so many colors? Because we work with colorful animals, and this huge, windowless room is dominated elsewhere by gray, beige, and white. The new installation has been likened to a Rubik’s Cube and to a container ship. You just know when you walk up to these colorful cabinets and open one that you’ll find delightful scientific treasures inside.
We’re still installing and organizing the specimens, but it’s a lot of fun to see it all come together and be able to access things in taxonomic order again.