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UCL Culture Blog


News and musings from the UCL Culture team


Specimen of the Week: Week Eighty-Four

By Emma-Louise Nicholls, on 20 May 2013

Scary MonkeyI am SO excited. I moved into a new flat last week and it has a balcony. That isn’t even the exciting part. Whilst I was flat hunting I narrowed the list down from 1230 to four by using a list of non-negotiable criteria (it’s good to know what you want in life), and then crossed off everything that didn’t stand up to the requirements. On viewing day, I was waiting for the estate agent outside property number one, staring up at the balcony when an eagle landed on the railing. In an ‘if it’s good enough for the eagle to sit on, it’s good enough for me to live in’ mindset, I took the flat. Almost there and then. After moving in, I took my first balcony outing and as I stepped out the self-same eagle erupted out of the corner and flew off. It was only then that I realised I in fact have a nest on my balcony, right there- on MY balcony, with three medium sized white eggs in it. WOW! I vowed never to step foot on the balcony again in order not to disturb the eagle and her future offspring and now check on her every evening using a mirror stuck to a spatula, very slowly and quietly inserted out of a window. She’s doing very well and I expect her baby eagles to hatch within the the next week or so. Now completely obsessed with baby animals in general, I thought I’d tell you about one we have at the Museum. This week’s Specimen of the Week is… (more…)

Specimen of the Week: Week Sixty-Five

By Emma-Louise Nicholls, on 7 January 2013

Scary Monkey WeekOne of my most favourite animal experiences was in a breeding facility. That sounds weird… let me start again. I went to a facility that had this particular species, which I was more or less obsessed with at the time (pretty much still am actually), and pulled my ‘I’m a scientist’ card and asked to speak with the resident specialist on this animal. Not only was I permitted to speak with her, but she let me into the actual enclosure with the species. BETTER YET, as I bent down to get a close up of one individual, another jumped on to my back. OH YEAH! We have two fully articulated skeletons of this species at the Museum (not as a result of my visit). This week’s Specimen of the Week is… (more…)