Zoology Museum, Cambridge
Fund-raising brochure for the University Zoology Museum Cambridge
GE ITY M US ERS IV CAMBR ID GY O FZ M O OOL EU UN WONDERS OF THE ANIMAL KINGDOM A new Museum of Zoology Top: How the refurbished Arup building will appear after refurbishment showing the new Whale Hall (Nicholas Hare Achitects) Left: The new Whale Hall (Nicholas Hare Achitects) Right: The Museumâ€™s finback whale skeleton, one of the largest recorded specimen, was washed up on the beach at Pevensey in East Sussex in 1865 where over 40,000 people flocked to see it. The skeleton was bought by the Museum in 1866 where it was on display in the original Museum building. It was re-displayed on the podium of the new Arup building in 1996 where it became a Cambridge landmark. Now dismantled and in store it will feature in the Museumâ€™s new Whale Hall. After the Blue Whale, the Finback is the second largest species on the planet. WONDERS OF THE ANIMAL KINGDOM The Museum, part of the Department of Zoology in the University of Cambridge, is one of the leading international research centres for the study of Zoology. The collections, which total some 4 million specimens, are a treasure house of the amazing diversity of animal life on earth. Here you can trace the evolution of life on earth from earliest times to the present day and see the results of current research. Completely new and redesigned exhibition galleries will display the story of the ‘Tree of Life’ from earliest times to the present, highlighting the rich diversity of the animal kingdom and the fantastic wealth of the Museum’s collections. All animal life will be there – from fossils showing the first foot with five digits to extinct species such as the Tasmanian Tiger and the Great Auk and from the Giant Sloth to a marine shell collected in Cook’s Strait in New Zealand and brought back from Cook’s second circumnavigation 1772–75. In addition to the new galleries, the project will include the building of new stores for our reserve collections which will provide better security and environmental conditions as well as, for the first time, public access. The project also includes the building of a new Discovery Space and Activity Room which will help us, not only to increase our visitor numbers and reach new audiences but which will significantly enhance our capacity for education and outreach. We are now on our way to our target of £5 million to fund the new Museum. If we are to succeed we must raise a further £3 million and we need your help. Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species Above: On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin, published on 24 November 1859, is the keystone of the study of evolutionary biology and one of the most important scientific publications of the last 150 years. Its full title was On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. Darwin's book introduced the scientific theory that populations evolve over the course of generations through a process of natural selection and that the diversity of life arose by common descent through a branching pattern of evolution. He included evidence that he had gathered on the Beagle expedition in the 1830s and subsequent findings from research, correspondence and experimentation. CAMBR ID GY O FZ M O OOL EU ITY M US ERS IV T he Museum of Zoology in Cambridge is a gem in a city full of wonderful museums. Among its amazing collections are a skeleton of a Dodo, the best example in the world of the extinct Great Auk and animals collected by Charles Darwin and by Alfred Russel Wallace, Darwin’s contemporary who also came up with the theory of evolution. As part of a total refurbishment of the building that houses the Museum, we are embarking on an ambitious new project to bring the diversity and wonder of the animal kingdom to life for the widest possible audience. With support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, work has begun to develop a totally new Museum of Zoology. UN Preserving and sustaining animal diversity …from so simple a beginning, endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved. GE A new Museum of Zoology 3 Top left: The museum can trace its history back to 1814 when the first collections were made but it was in 1865 that the museum moved to its first purpose-built building – erected on the site of Cambridge’s first botanic garden. This picture shows the old Museum with the two elephant skeletons, the African elephant on the right, the Indian on the left. Top middle: A probable microsaur, Kirktonecta milnerae, from the Early Carboniferous of East Kirkton, near Bathgate in Scotland. This specimen is the earliest known microsaur and the only one so far from the UK and shows evidence of soft tissue preservation. Microsaurs all had short tails and small legs, but were otherwise quite varied in form. The group included lizard-like animals that were relatively well-adapted to living on dry land, burrowing forms, and others that, like the modern axolotl, retained their gills into adult life, and so presumably never left the water. UMZC 2002a Top right: On 27 December 1831, at the age of 22, Charles Darwin set sail aboard HMS Beagle bound for South America. During the 5 year surveying voyage he collected many specimens of animals, plants and rocks, including a fine collection of fish. On his return, Darwin sent these fishes to the Reverend Leonard Jenyns to describe and he identified several new species from them. Bottom left: Of all the Museum’s specimens, one of the most evocative is the skeleton of the Dodo, (Raphus cucullatus), an extinct flightless bird that lived on the island of Mauritius, east of Madagascar in the Indian Ocean. Just what a dodo looked like is still not really known and this specimen is made from the bones of several birds assembled in the 19th century. The first recorded mention of the Dodo was by Dutch sailors in 1598. In the following years, the bird was hunted by sailors, their domesticated animals, and invasive species introduced during that time. The last widely accepted sighting of a Dodo was in 1662 but its extinction was not immediately noticed, and some considered it to be a mythical creature. Bottom right: The Swallowtail (Papilio machaon subspecies britannicus) is Britain’s largest native butterfly and the only member of the Papilionidae family resident in Britain. This specimen was caught on Swaffham Fen in Cambridgeshire in 1906. This British subspecies is now only found on a small number of Norfolk broads and specimens like this can therefore provide invaluable evidence of the past distribution, ecology and appearance of our native fauna. 4 THE DEVELOPMENT PROJECT Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution Theodosius Dobzhansky • • • • • Using our unrivalled collections, images, video and sound, we will bring vividly to life the range of animal life on Earth in all its amazing diversity. The new displays will also highlight some of the personal stories of the collectors, naturalists and scientists who have contributed to the collections drawing on many of our unseen collections. For the first time, we will be able to show to the public the diversity and wonder of the animal kingdom. From the story of how animals evolved on this planet and the amazing diversity of life on Earth today, to current research about how the changes that are affecting the planet are having an impact on the animal kingdom. The Insect collection includes a collection of beetles, in a single box, which Charles Darwin made when he was a student at Cambridge. These are of exceptional interest to evolutionary biologists, since it could be argued that it is these animals that first ignited Darwin’s serious interest in natural history and biology. ‘I have a great number of insects at Cambridge for you... Whenever I take anything good, you may rely upon it, that you are always uppermost in my mind: I shall not soon forget my first entomological walks with you...’ (Letter from Darwin to Fox, 15th July 1829) This shell, Astraea heliotropium, was collected on Captain Cook’s second circumnavigation undertaken between 1772 and 1775. It was found in Cook’s Strait in New Zealand. CAMBR ID GY O FZ M O OOL EU ITY M US ERS IV • Redisplay the museum’s collections in a dynamic and exciting way Make our collections accessible to specialists and non-specialist audiences Ensure the long-term sustainability of the Museum’s internationally significant collections Improve the Museum’s storage facilities Enable greater access to the collections Enable more visitors to enjoy a better experience Expand the Museum’s education programmes and online facilities By June 2016, when the Museum re-opens, we will have completed a major refurbishment of the Museum, its archives and its reserve collections. UN • Preserving and sustaining bio-diversity GE Our aim is to develop the Museum as a major national and international resource for the understanding of animal biodiversity in the past, today and in the future. We wish to improve public understanding and appreciation of the animal kingdom in all its amazing diversity. To this end we will: 5 Top left: This specimen, Silvanerpeton miripedes, is the earliest known anthracosaur, from the Early Carboniferous, and was found in East Kirkton, near Bathgate in Scotland. Anthracosauria is an order of extinct reptile-like amphibians that flourished during the Carboniferous and early Permian periods. This is the holotype specimen, a specimen which is used to formally describe the whole species. UMZC T.1317 Bottom left: One of the most imposing specimens in the museum, standing almost 4 metres high, is the skeleton of the Giant Ground Sloth, Megatherium americanum, that lived over 10,000 years ago. Top right: Diary of Leonard Jenyns (1800–93), an English clergyman, author and naturalist who set up the Societies Museum, which was to become the Cambridge University Museum of Zoology. He was the original choice for the naturalist on the second voyage of HMS Beagle but turned down the offer due to ill health and parish duties. His diary entry for 1831 records: ‘This year I had the offer of accompanying Capt. Fitzroy, as Naturalist, in the Beagle, on his voyage to survey the coasts of S. America, afterwards going round the globe:- declined the appointment wc was afterwards given to Charles Darwin Esq. of Xts’ College Cambridge.’ Middle right: The cracked egg was collected by Charles Darwin and was re-discovered by a museum volunteer who was going through a box of eggs in the Museum’s collection in 2009, just after the 200th anniversary of Darwin’s birth. A check in the archives revealed that in the 19th century it had been noted that it was: ‘...received through Frank Darwin, having been sent to me by his father who said he got it at Maldonado (Uruguay) and that it belonged to the Common Tinamou of those parts... The great man put it into too small a box and hence its unhappy state.’ Bottom right: These bird specimens, all from the islands of Hawaii, are now extinct due to the incursion of mankind. Loss of habitat, the introduction of non-native species into the islands and the diseases they carry, especially avian malaria, have decimated the native populations. 6 HOW CAN YOU HELP? We have already attracted much of the £5 million required but we need your help to raise a further £3 million in order to complete the project and provide a Museum that our collections deserve. Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable of conceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows. If you are interested in making a donation to the Museum refurbishment project or for further information please contact: Professor Paul Brakefield, Director, Museum of Zoology Downing Street, Cambridge CB2 3EJ Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species Tel: +44 (0)1223 336650 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org To make a donation online please go to the University’s online giving page www.campaign.cam.ac.uk/giving/zoology Above: Newton's Parakeet or the Rodrigues Parakeet (Psittacula exsul) is an extinct species of parrot that was endemic to the Mascarene island of Rodrigues in the western Indian Ocean and these two specimens, a male and a female, are the only known examples in the world. The female was collected in 1871 by George Jenner, then the magistrate of Rodrigues and the male was shot on 14 August 1874 by a Mr. Vandorous. GE ITY M US ERS IV CAMBR ID GY O FZ M O OOL EU 7 UN The introductory section of the new display (Blue the Design Company Ltd) A view down onto the main floor of the galleries (Blue the Design Company Ltd) 8 The display of major specimens (Blue the Design Company Ltd) GIVING You can help us create a new museum to celebrate the diversity of the animal kingdom and help us preserve and sustain our amazing collections. How your gift will be acknowledged: Patron: Donations over £75,000 • • • Invitation to exclusive patron events Naming / branding opportunities for gallery spaces or individual displays Permanent acknowledgement in the new Museum Benefactor: Donations over £20,000 • • • Invitation to private views and exhibition openings Naming / branding opportunities for individual displays Permanent acknowledgement in the new Museum The Museum is enthusiastically embracing this unique redevelopment opportunity to showcase the extraordinary richness of our collections in superb new spaces to the benefit of researchers and the broader public alike. Professor Paul Brakefield FRS Director, University Museum of Zoology Donor: Donations over £2,500 • Permanent acknowledgement in the new Museum Supporter: Donations up to £2,500 Acknowledgement on Zoology website Left: Greater Birds-of-Paradise (Paradisaea apoda) ITY M US ERS IV CAMBR ID GY O FZ M O OOL EU GE UN • 9 Top left: The Tasmanian tiger (Thylacinus cynocephalus), is more closely related to a Kangaroo than an actual Tiger and was, until recently, the largest carnivorous marsupial. By the time of European settlement, they had declined on the Australian mainland but remained on their island stronghold of Tasmania. There they could have remained in the sizable wilderness, were it not for continued persecution by humans and the destruction of their habitat. Hunted to extinction, the last one died in Hobart Zoo in 1936. The museum has a large collection of Thylacine material, much of it ‘collected’ in the 1860’s and 70’s. The Museum has an outstanding collection of skins, skeletons, organs in spirit and this material is of critical use to scientists today in our efforts to understand the Thylacine and its place in the tree of life, which ultimately leads to a greater understanding of the natural world and how best to care for it. Middle left: While preparing the Museum’s collections for their move to their new home in new, purpose built stores, we have made number of exciting discoveries. In packing this specimen of a dolphin skull we found that it was decorated with two pictures which have been scratched into its surface, a technique known as scrimshaw. Scrimshaw was traditionally carried out by whalers in the 19th century using the bones and teeth of sperm whales, the baleen of other whales and the tusks of walruses. Bottom left: These Partula land snails used to be common on many islands throughout Polynesia in the Pacific Ocean and have been much studied by evolutionary geneticists. However, in 1987 a species of carnivorous snail (Euglandina rosea) was introduced from America in order to control another introduced species, the African land snail (Lissachatina fulica), which had become a serious horticultural pest in Polynesia since the Second World War. Within a few years, the endemic Partula had been exterminated from many Polynesian islands and some species now only survive in captivity. Bottom right: The Museum’s bird collection, one of the most important in the country, includes 30,000 study skins and mounted birds, 15,000 clutches of eggs and 2000 specimens consisting of skeletal material. The original nucleus of the skin collection was formed by the birds assembled by Hugh Strickland (1811–53), and is thought to represent more than 3,000 of the nearly 10,000 recognised bird species. 10 ITY M US ERS IV CAMBR ID GY O FZ M O OOL EU UN All photographs ÂŠ UMZC unless otherwise stated The Great Auk (Pinguinus impennis) is a flightless bird that became extinct in the mid-19th century. It bred on rocky, isolated islands with easy access to the ocean and a plentiful food supply, a rarity in nature that provided only a few breeding sites for the auks. When not breeding, the auks spent their time foraging in the waters of the North Atlantic, ranging as far south as northern Spain and also around the coast of Canada, Greenland, Iceland, the Faroe Islands, Norway, Ireland, and Great Britain. GE The Museum of Zoology is renowned for the quality of its collections, research and teaching. Contributions made by the public play a vital role in ensuring that the Museum is able to preserve its Designated Collections and make them accessible for all to enjoy.