Request for Specimens

natural history crow

A taxidermy crow at the Natural History Centre. Photo by Barb Biagi. The Natural History Centre is asking locals for animal and bird specimens to help expand our collection.

In order to develop our collection and educational displays, the Natural History Centre is asking locals for assistance in obtaining animals who have died of natural causes and are in good condition for taxidermy.

How you can help
If you find an animal that has died very recently, preferably within one-hour, please place it in two bags and into a freezer as soon as possible. Then call the Natural History Centre and we will pick it up. Contact Neil Wilson 335-1232 or Barb Biagi 335-1299. Each year we have several animals mounted to become part of the educational displays. The most recent were a Yellow-bellied Sapsucker and a Turkey Vulture. Our collection is especially lacking shore and sea birds and we have no ducks.

We are also looking for a large walk in freezer that could be used for 2–4 weeks of the year to freeze our animal and bird specimens. This allows us to protect the collection without using harmful chemicals. In return for your generosity, you will receive a free admission ticket for 2016.

Tips to help wildlife

The changing light of the season can increase the effect of a window being mirror-like and fooling birds’ senses. To prevent window collisions, try using netting or decals. Two or three inch paper stars and/or crescents to the most problematic windows works well. You can also check out the numerous products created for bird safety. To prevent hitting wildlife in your vehicle, observe Hornby and Denman Islands’ speed limits. When possible, anywhere, driving under 60kmh will certainly reduce the carnage.

If you come across an injured animal, please contact one of the following numbers for assistance:
Local Volunteer Barbi Biagi: 250-335-1299
Mountainaire Avian Rescue: 250-337-2021
Saltspring Seal Pup Rescue: 250-537-0777

April-October 15 2015 281

Hornby Island residents Norma and Neil Wilson use paper stars and crescents on select windows to prevent bird collisions.


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