An Investigation into Dating Remedial Actions Affecting Old Mineral Collections

Written by John Cooke, Mineral Enthusiast and Part-Time Volunteer Curator The villains of this story are those minerals that have a remarkable aptitude for decay.  The heroes?  Those people who intervene and “stop the rot”.  With a bit of luck, the heroes have left behind clues as to the date of their intervention. I had … More An Investigation into Dating Remedial Actions Affecting Old Mineral Collections

Origin of Feathers 100 Million Years Before Birds

Written by Prof Michael Benton, Palaeobiology Research Group, University of Bristol. A new study (Yang et al. 2019) shows that pterosaurs, as well as dinosaurs had feathers, thus extending the origin of feathers minimally back to about 250 million years ago. Archaeopteryx, pretty much the oldest bird, dates from 150 million years ago, so that’s … More Origin of Feathers 100 Million Years Before Birds

An Ediacaran Odyssey

Written by Hilary Ketchum, Collections Manager (Earth Collections), Oxford University Museum of Natural History A few weeks ago, I traveled down to Dorset with my fantastic volunteer Amber Wagstaffe in our very cool museum van* to take part in the 2019 Lyme Regis Fossil Festival. We were going to meet Frankie Dunn (University of Bristol, … More An Ediacaran Odyssey

Investigation into the Origin of a Boxed Victorian Mineral Collection

Written by John Cooke, Mineral Enthusiast and Part-Time Volunteer Curator The Collection and its Origins Recently, I had the opportunity to purchase a Victorian boxed collection of minerals comprising six mahogany trays with approximately 45 specimens per tray, making a total of 270 specimens. The box is of a mahogany construction with sturdy gilt-plated handles … More Investigation into the Origin of a Boxed Victorian Mineral Collection