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Fly on the Wall 

November 30, 2009

Ants march online

In an effort to increase accessibility, the Academy’s AntWeb project recently loaded more than 31,000 images onto Wikimedia Commons, an upload which took several days to complete. Whether you’re an entomologist, a backyard enthusiast or just a fan of unique photographs, an up-close look at ants is fascinating. Their bodies can be as small as the point of a pin, or as big as a walnut; as sleek as sports cars, or as bulky as tanks.

Ants are a vital part of ecosystems around the globe, and scientists like the Academy’s own Brian Fisher are hard at work cataloguing new species, and using data like that collected in AntWeb to inform conservation decisions. After all, while tiny, the collective weight of all the ants in the world is equal to the weight of all the world’s humans – they’re a force to be reckoned with.

Those interested in using the photos can do so subject to a Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike license.

Filed under: Other News,Research Departments — Helen @ 1:03 pm

November 18, 2009

The leg bone’s connected to the…hip bone

While most of us were sleeping in the wee hours of Monday and Tuesday mornings this week, three exhibit specialists from Academy Studios were busy disassembling and reassembling a full-size cast of a Tyrannosaurus rex skeleton at the Academy. The same crew assembled the skeleton over a year ago in the Altered State exhibit. Now, the T. rex is in the front lobby to make room for upcoming changes in Altered State, and the installation of our first temporary exhibit, Extreme Mammals, which is coming to the Academy in April, 2010. This time around, the crew knew their way around the T.rex so well that they finished in two eight-hour nights, instead of the expected three.
Disassembled T. rexFront lobby

Filed under: Exhibits — Helen @ 11:28 am

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