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  • Happy Birthday, HMNS! | BEYONDbones
    in 2009 HMNS will be celebrating a BIG birthday Since we are hoping to have as many people as possible participate we are going to hold the party ALL YEAR LONG Exhibits classes special events and behind the scenes action are going to allow all HMNS patrons the opportunity to experience their favorite part of the Museum in a way they ve never been able to before Seriously though we have to have cake I LOVE cake If you like cake face painting bug chef concoctions watching different chemicals get mixed and go BANG taking docent led tours through every hall learning how to preserve sentimental items molding casting dinosaur bones learning about how exhibits are built petting tarantulas and making cool crafts then you re going to want to be at HMNS on January 3rd from 10am 2pm when we have the best party of all OUR BIRTHDAY PARTY Don t miss this special day as we kick off a year that s going to be filled with surprises that will excite tantalize and leave you wanting more 0 0 0 This entry was posted in Science and tagged birthday cake chemistry docent exhibits party tarantulasm tours by Jamie

    Original URL path: http://blog.hmns.org/2009/01/happy-birthday-hmns/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Babes and Chicks: Museum Style | BEYONDbones
    collective awww This little chick is an end result of a Dissection Lab called The Yolk s On You Yes dissection but the class was about eggs not chicks In addition to dissecting both hard boiled and raw chicken eggs unfertilized students were able to observe fertilized chicken eggs in an incubator One of the demonstrations the teacher did was to place raw eggs in vinegar a few days before class If you haven t tried this at home you ought to it s really neat It is even more interesting to take an egg once soaked in vinegar and place it in corn syrup I won t tell you what happens since hands on science is way more fun From an educational standpoint it is a good activity to illustrate diffusion and osmosis Of course I wouldn t recommend eating any of the eggs soaked in vinegar or corn syrup but if you dissect the hard boiled kind with a kitchen knife you can always make sandwiches Bon appetit 0 0 0 This entry was posted in Zoology and tagged chicken egg diffusion dissection egg osmosis by Christine Bookmark the permalink About Christine Christine manages the live animal collection

    Original URL path: http://blog.hmns.org/2009/02/babes-and-chicks/ (2016-02-12)
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  • The Great Raise Houston – Feb. 28 at 7 p.m. | BEYONDbones
    The Amazing Race Image Credit dabawenya who s ready for a hunt Most shows leave you wondering who would fight to date someone who s also dating 30 other people Who would let Simon Cowell pass judgement on them publicly Who would willingly sign up for a show literally titled Wife Swap Not so with The Amazing Race Who wants to white water raft in Chile navigate with Magellan s Map or rappel down the face of a Portuguese cliff Everyone Because that s awesome And now the experience has come to town in the form of The Great Raise Houston a special that follows ten teams as they run jump dive fly and speed through the city on a three day 350 mile trek From kayaking on the bayou to skydiving to ax throwing the contestants will rely on creativity and common sense to keep them in the race Part of the trek is a visit to the Houston Museum of Natural Science Best of all the teams competing in The Great Raise Houston will be raising funds for the Houston Food Bank Kid s Café and Casa de Esperanza The second half airs tomorrow night at 7 p

    Original URL path: http://blog.hmns.org/2009/02/the-great-raise-houston-feb-28-at-7-pm/ (2016-02-12)
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  • 100 Years – 100 Objects: Smithsonite | BEYONDbones
    back here frequently to learn more about this diverse selection of behind the scenes curiosities we will post the image and description of a new object every few days This description is from Joel the Museum s President and Curator of Gems and Minerals He s chosen spectacular objects from the Museum s mineralogy collection which includes some of the most rare and fascinating mineral specimens in the world that we ll be sharing here and on hmns org throughout the year Tsumeb Mine Tsumeb Namibia Among the most beautiful of all smithsonite specimens found anywhere in the world are the apple green to emerald green crystals from Tsumeb The color comes from trace amounts of copper and is so distinctive that cuprian smithsonite from Tsumeb was for a time given its own name herrerite named for the local Herrero tribe before it was proven to be a variety of smithsonite The extraordinary 8 1 cm example pictured here is perhaps the finest known example of the variety showing deep color unusual transparency brilliant luster interesting crystal shape and a fine large grouping of crystals Marvel at the world s most spectacular collection of natural mineral crystals in the Cullen Hall of Gems and Minerals at the Houston Museum of Natural Science You can see larger and more detailed images of this rare specimen as well as the others we ve posted so far this year in the photo gallery on hmns org 0 5 0 This entry was posted in Gems Minerals and tagged 100 objects copper cuprian smithsonite emerald gems Herrero HMNS mineralogy minerals Namibia photo photo gallery preserving objects rare objects Science smithsonite Tsumeb by Joel Bookmark the permalink About Joel Not only is Joel the President of the Museum he s also a curator He has

    Original URL path: http://blog.hmns.org/2009/02/100-years-100-objects-smithsonite/ (2016-02-12)
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  • In fide constans… Always loyal [Lucy’s Legacy] | BEYONDbones
    Discovery Institute early humans evolution fossils God created the world HMNS Intelligent Design Lucy Lucy skeleton npr science is myth skeletons Turkana Boy Wedge Document by Dirk Bookmark the permalink About Dirk As curator of anthropology Dirk is responsible for the museum s artifact collection and is involved in its temporary and permanent anthropology exhibits Dirk is an expert in human cultures he curates the Museum s Hall of the Americas and specializes in native American cultures like the Aztec and Maya View all posts by Dirk 5 thoughts on In fide constans Always loyal Lucy s Legacy Earl Cooper on September 3 2009 at 8 47 am said I don t believe that Lucky is the mother of all In the article it said that only 40 was found and very little useful material from Lucy s skull was recovered That mean over 60 of head is missing which is the most important I can t agree with a bold headline like this with so much lacking evidence E C Dirk Van Tuerenhout on September 3 2009 at 9 53 am said Dear Mr Cooper Thanks for your reaction to this blog entry I am not asking that you believe that Lucy is the mother of all She was not The text panels in the exhibit did not identify her as such either What we can say is that Lucy being an upright walking primate shared that particular trait with us However compared to us her brains were much smaller and we do not have evidence that Lucy and her relatives ever used tools as we do Also it is not quite true that over 60 of the head is missing it is probably more than that We have 40 of her entire body preserved or as you would prefer stating 60 is missing Missing in Lucy s case that is In my blog I mentioned that we know of more than just Lucy to study her species Scientists have acces to more than just one Australopithecus In fact we have found more than 300 individual Australopithecines like Lucy That is in the same ball park as the number of individual Neandertalers we know and those were around much more recently That is what makes this story so fascinating we have incredible time depth more than 3 million years and a substantial database to work from more than 300 individuals Just to put things in perspective about 35 years ago when Lucy was found that number was probably in the single digits Ongoing field work continues to yield more evidence of ancient human ancestors This brings me back to your reference to Lucy as the mother of all What we can say about Lucy in the context of additional fossils some older and some more recent is that she was a distant ancestor of ours Perhaps a great great great aunt if you want but somehow related to us The proof is in the ever growing set of bones

    Original URL path: http://blog.hmns.org/2009/02/in-fide-constans-always-loyal/ (2016-02-12)
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  • Caves are the Coolest! | BEYONDbones
    an easy way Stalac tites hold on tight to the ceiling while stalag mites might one day reach it Other kinds of dripstones in the cave are columns helictites and soda straws Tip NEVER touch anything in the caves because the oils and acids on our skin repel water and thereby kill the cave formation Don t be a cave killer My favorite example of flowstone in the caves was a formation called the Diamond River Most times moving water deposits small amounts of the minerals it dissolved on its trip down through rock layers However if the water perhaps is moving slowly it will deposit more of its mineral wealth the latter is what makes the Diamond River so sparkly My second favorite formation is a kind of flowstone When deposits flow into thin sheets it is sometimes called a Cave Curtain or Cave Drapery When a cave curtain has various light and dark layers it is called Cave Bacon It is so named because of its resemblance to its pork y counterpart Cave Bacon On a related note the temperature in the caverns is a seemingly lovely 70 degrees HOWEVER the relative humidity hovers around 99 making it feel closer to a stuffy 80 degrees This level of humidity has an interesting side effect on the guano bat droppings The bats that deposited the guano lived in the caves QUITE some time ago so there is no smell BUT the moisture in the caves keeps the guano in the same condition is was when it came out of the bats over a thousand years ago i e it never dries out In some spots it is even up to five foot thick So watch where you step It is amazing to see the things that Mother Nature can

    Original URL path: http://blog.hmns.org/2009/02/caves-are-the-coolest/ (2016-02-12)
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  • We heart local photographers | BEYONDbones
    up to hunt all over the Museum for photographs needed to illustrate Wikipedia articles Their images are flooding into the Houston Museum of Natural Science pool on Flickr and they are stunning Seriously go check them out A few people stayed after for this quick snapshot but there were many others who donated their time to help Wikipedia A huge thank you to everyone who was there Thank you to all of our Wikipedia Loves Art rock stars Bottom row from left to right click on their names to visit their photostreams Paul Jean Erin Stephanie Laurie Gwen Deji Second row from left to right Unknown Stephen Cortney Sandy Gini Photo Credit The Amazing Sarah G It s not too late to participate in Wikipedia Loves Art You can read information about the contest here as well as the Museum s photography guidelines be sure to submit your photos before Sunday 0 0 0 This entry was posted in Science and tagged brooklyn museum HMNS local photographers meetup photography photos wikipedia wikipedia loves art WLA by Erin B Bookmark the permalink About Erin B Erin is the Director of Business Development at HMNS In a past life she was a

    Original URL path: http://blog.hmns.org/2009/02/we-heart-local-photographers/ (2016-02-12)
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  • The Siege of Masada: Piecing Together the Puzzle | BEYONDbones
    74 C E and probably lasted no longer than 2 3 months The Roman siege works including eight camps that housed approximately 8000 troops and a circumvallation siege wall still are clearly visible encircling the base of the mountain In June July 1995 I was privileged to co direct excavations in the Roman siege works at Masada together with Professor Gideon Foerster Hebrew University of Jerusalem Dr Haim Goldfus Ben Gurion University of the Negev and Mr Benny Arubas Hebrew University of Jerusalem We focused much of our attention on Camp F which is located on the northwest side of the mountain and housed about half of the Tenth Legion with the other half in Camp B at the eastern foot of Masada Our excavations brought to light low stone walls over which the Roman troops pitched leather tents The floors of the tent units were covered with broken potsherds altogether we recovered 240 kilograms about 530 pounds of pottery The overwhelming majority of the pottery belongs to local types of storage jars a finding that sheds light on the provisioning of the Roman troops during the siege Because Masada is in the desert supplies mainly food and water were likely brought in skins bags and woven baskets from other parts of the country transported overland on pack animals or on small boats across the Dead Sea Upon reaching the camps at Masada the supplies were emptied into large ceramic jars for storage The jars protected the contents from dampness insects and vermin Most of the soldiers probably prepared and consumed their food using utensils in their individual mess kits However the commander seems to have dined in style judging from delicately painted bowls with eggshell thin walls found in his tent unit which were imported from nearby Nabataea southeast of the Dead Sea For me archaeology is not a means of validating or negating personal faith and beliefs Instead it is a means of recovering and understanding the past often one potsherd at a time as in the case of Masada These potsherds are pieces of a puzzle which enable us to reconstruct part of a picture that was otherwise lost For more information on Masada and the Jewish resistance hear Jodi s lecture at HMNS on March 9th For more information on our distinguished lecture series click here Can t get enough Judeo Christian history Attend one of our upcoming lectures Check out this video with the curator Go behind the scenes to discover how the exhibit was built 1 1 0 This entry was posted in Anthropology and tagged Anthropology archaeology Dead Sea Eleazar ben Yair famous siege flavius josephus Hebrew University HMNS israel Jewish revolt jodi magness lecture series Masada mass suicide Nabataea ostraca potshards roman empire siege the jewish war Yigael Yadin by Steven Bookmark the permalink About Steven Steven never dreamed his first job out of college would be in public relations and on top of that working for one of the top museums

    Original URL path: http://blog.hmns.org/2009/02/the-siege-of-masada-piecing-together-the-puzzle/ (2016-02-12)
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