Monthly Archive: December Coll
July 18, 2011 – Welcome to Churchill!
We arrive from Winnipeg by twin turboprop early this evening, after the usual minor delays and frustrations,… pick up our 4×4 vehicle, get settled in at the wonderful new Churchill Northern Studies Centre facility and spend a few hours showing two novice crew members some of the nearby tundra features, including a splendid extended sunset (officially at 10:07 PM, but with a beautifully long prelude).
July 10-12: More Surprises from the South Side
A long awaited addition to the Royal Ontario Museum was installed today in the Life in Crisis: Schad Gallery of Biodiversity. Our new North American Plains Bison (Bison bison bison) wears his shaggy winter coat and munches on grass, a key component of his vegetarian diet. Weighing about 360 kg (or 800 lbs) today, this large specimen was prepared for the ROM by the same taxidermist who prepared the White Rhino also on display in the Schad Gallery.
By Brendt Hyde, Mineralogy Technician
Our solar system is a very busy place! Aside from the 9 (no, make that 8!) major planets and their moons, there are 5 dwarf planets, 3 massive asteroid belts containing tens of thousands of smaller irregular bodies, and an untold number of comets.
Fun fact about the TIFF Bell Lightbox: its Artistic Director started out as a box-office volunteer. As a teenager, Noah Cowan volunteered for the relatively young “Festival of Festivals”, now the Toronto International Film Festival. Since those humble beginnings, he has started Midnight Madness, founded the Global Film Initiative, curated major retrospectives on Indian and Japanese cinema, started a production company, been a film critic, Co-Directed TIFF and became Artistic Director of TIFF Bell Lightbox- but not exactly in that order.
July 6-8: Visitors
These past few days we have had some welcome visitors to Camp. First, some of our colleagues from the Montana State University and the Museum of the Rockies joined us for a day on July 6th. They are working the same series of rocks just a few kilometers south of us in Montana, and wanted to see what we are finding and where we are finding it on this side of the border. We also had a reporter from the Toronto Star join the crew to see ROM dinosaur field research first hand.
July 3, 2011: The South Side Ceratopsian Quarry
In 1861, American Physician and Naturalist James Graham Cooper described a new species of tortoise from the deserts of California, and a 150-year mystery began. He named this new discovery Agassiz’s Land Tortoise (Gopherus agassizii), but the name was changed some years later to Desert Tortoise. Fast forward 140 years later to a review that was published in 2002 on the conservation of the Desert Tortoise and the status of existing populations. It summarized evidence that Gopherus agassizii was not a single species, but was actually two to four species.