Visits & Loans
Scheduling a Visit
Please contact the collection manager should you wish to visit the collection. Visiting hours are Monday through Friday from roughly 7:00 in the morning until 4:00 in the afternoon. The public museum is closed on Mondays from Labor Day to July Fourth, but the scientific collections are open for use.
Fluid specimens may be borrowed for use by researchers in the United States. Due to current hazardous shipping restrictions, training levels of current staff, cost in shipping, and potential loss of packages labeled “hazardous materials”, fluid specimens are only loaned by UPS ground in the Unites States. Skeletal specimens may be loaned around the world to qualified researchers.
Requests for loans should either be made by hard copy letter on institutional stationary or by email. Loans are made to permanent staff at Universities and Museums, or to graduate students with their advisor also listed on the paperwork. In all cases the Master’s or Doctoral advisor should be aware that he/she is responsible for the loan. A brief synopsis of the study on the specimens should be outlined in the request as well as how the specimens will be used. Any requests for sampling of the specimens for tissue, removing stomach contents or small cuts to ascertain sex, must be authorized before the specimens are sent for loan.
When sending fluid specimens they have three layers of plastic preventing leaks of the small amount of fluid and cheesecloth maintaining the moisture inside the inner bag. Absorbent material is placed between the second and outside layer of plastic. Shipping is by UPS surface. The specimens are maintained in 70% ethanol/ethyl alcohol that is NOT denatured. Please maintain this fluid when at the borrowing institution and do not store in isopropyl alcohol.
Two copies of the paperwork are sent with loans, one for the researcher and the second to be signed on receipt and inspection of the package. Note condition of the specimens and verify contents before sending back the signed copy.
Generally only 1/2 of our total specimens will be sent in any one loan, with the second half sent out after return of the first borrowed portion. In common species, the two loans may be mailed in consecutive weeks with permission to borrow all specimens in our collection. Holotypes are never lent.