When the Dinosaurs Come Out

Babu emus teach Peabody visitors about their prehistoric ancestors

Illustration by Hanh Nguyen. At the Yale Peabody Museum of Natural History, glass cases around an exhibition hall hold fossilized, 75-million-year-old dinosaur eggs. But three eggs, under incubator lamps and the watchful eyes of Peabody staff, are not like the others. While the others lie still, as they have for millions of years, these speckled blue eggs wobble and shake in their enclosure. They contain the stars of this special exhibition, Tiny Titans: Dinosaur Eggs and Babies: three baby emus. On March 15, as the. . . Read more
Jasmine Horsey
Eagle Eyes

A team of citizen scientists are helping collect data that could improve New Haven’s urban ecology.

“I like to know the names of things,” David Heiser tells me, and his office proves it. The table where we sit is covered with piles of framed and labeled insects with a jewel-like turquoise beetle at the very top. Behind him is an enormous, pastel-colored model of a flower’s insides, which looks vaguely pornographic. And near my hand, the tip of a hairy leg is just visible through the crack in a pouch marked “Tarantula.” As Head of Education and Outreach at the Peabody. . . Read more
Eric Boodman
Pressed Specimens

Botanists are currently engaged in the colossal task of preserving fragile, sometimes centuries-old leaves in online databases where scientists worldwide can access and analyze them.

While Horatio Fenn was studying at the Yale College Medical Institute in 1822, he created a book containing over seven hundred pressed plant specimens he found in and around New Haven. Fenn’s book is now in the Yale Herbarium at 21 Sachem Street, where the university’s plant specimens are kept. The pages are yellowing, but the specimens themselves look surprisingly well preserved. Patrick Sweeney, collections manager at the Yale Herbarium, is plucking pages from the spine of Fenn’s book and carefully turning them to prevent. . . Read more
Mitchell Murdock
The Queen is Dead, Long Live the Queen

The queen of the Yale Peabody Museum’s leaf-cutter ant colony is no more.

Queen Victoria of England ruled for sixty-three years, seven months and two days before her death in 1901.  In accordance with her meticulous instructions, the queen’s body was dressed in a white gown and her wedding veil, and beside her were placed the stipulated photographs, locks of hair, and a plaster cast of the hand of Prince Albert. On February 2, her coffin was borne through the streets of London on a gun carriage. With perhaps less fanfare, after a reign of four years, another. . . Read more
Rachel Lipstein
Shots in the Dark

A safari through dioramas in the Peabody Museum.

A safari through dioramas in the Peabody Museum reveals animals foreign to New Haven.. . . Read more
Breanna Jedrzejewski