From the Field

Monthly Archive: December From

Bug Hunting with Bed Sheets

Posted: June 25, 2015 - 15:44 , by Nicole Richards
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3 people in silhouette look for insects attracted to a light

What would make a couple of insect-keen naturalists lug a car battery, a mercury vapour lamp and a white bed sheet into a forest around midnight? A BioBlitz of course!

BioBlitz Bits - Elusive At-Risk Birds

Posted: June 11, 2015 - 19:20 , by Stacey Kerr
ROM scientist Kevin Seymour looks at a map with the bird team at the 2012 Ontario BioBlitz in Rouge park, deciding where the team will survey

Blog by ROM Assistant Curator of Vertebrate Palaeontology Kevin Seymour

This is the fourth installment of our "BioBlitz Bits" Series - ROM scientists share their favourite stories from past Ontario BioBlitz events

BioBlitz Bits - A Tale of Two Bugs

Posted: June 4, 2015 - 21:14 , by Stacey Kerr
ROM scientist Antonia Guidotti lifts a jar up to a white sheet lit by a blacklight to collect insects attracted to the sheet during the 2012 Ontario Bioblitz

Blog by ROM Entomology Technician Antonia Guidotti

This is the third installment of our "BioBlitz Bits" Series - ROM scientists share their favourite stories from past Ontario BioBlitz events

BioBlitz Bits - Fungi Findings

Posted: May 29, 2015 - 20:27 , by Stacey Kerr
ROM scientist Jean-Marc Moncalvo gestures to a young boy to explain something about fungi during a guided bioblitz hike through the forest during the 2014 Ontario BioBlitz

Blog by ROM Senior Curator of Mycology, Jean-Marc Moncalvo

This is the second installment of our "BioBlitz Bits" Series - ROM scientists share their favourite stories from past Ontario BioBlitz events

BioBlitz Bits - Night of the Newts and Salamanders

Posted: May 22, 2015 - 21:57 , by Stacey Kerr
A forest scene at night lit only by headlamps from the ontario bioblitz teams as they survey in the dark

Blog by ROM Herpetology Technician Amy Lathrop

This is the first of our "BioBlitz Bits" Series - ROM scientists share their favourite stories from past Ontario BioBlitz events

 

The Monastery of St Moses, Syria: The Prehistoric Remains

Posted: December 1, 2014 - 08:52 , by Robert Mason
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The largest corbelled structure, in fact a complex of three (Feature 56 - 58), with the Qalamoun mountains in the background.

Since 2004 I had walked the Qalamoun mountains around the monastery of Deir Mar Musa looking for archaeological features to record. In all that time I found one lithic, a stone tool from humanity’s prehistoric past. My colleagues back home that specialised in these objects would say that I just didn’t know what I was looking for. In the last days of the 2009 season, what turned out to be my last season at the monastery, I thought I would reconnoitre the southern part of the field area.

The Monastery of St Moses, Syria: The Cave Survey

Posted: July 11, 2014 - 12:20 , by Robert Mason
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This cave would have been a home for one of the monks of the Deir Mar Musa community, the wall at the front of the photograph shows that they had a small terrace outside the cave, either for a living area or for growing food.

The monastery at Deir Mar Musa would not have just comprised the main buildings, the monks would actually have been dispersed in hermitages across the landscape.

The Monastery of St Moses, Syria: The Frescoes

Posted: July 4, 2014 - 12:26 , by Robert Mason
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The fresco of the Last Judgement on the West wall of the chapel at Deir Mar Musa.

The third in a series on the monastery of St Moses in Syria comprises a detailed examination of the important cycle of 11th-12th century frescoes found in the chapel.

Triceratops Dig Week 2: June 20 - June 27

Posted: July 3, 2014 - 16:14 , by David Evans
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ROM Palaeo team working in the Triceratops quarry.

@ROMPalaeo Triceratops Dig Week 2: June 20-June 27

The Monastery of St Moses, Syria: The Pottery

Posted: June 29, 2014 - 09:38 , by Robert Mason
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Pottery with an earthenware fired-clay body, overall white slip, incision through the slip with a broad tool, overall lead glaze, splashed with copper-green, probably mid-14th century.

Despite there being almost 1,400 years of occupation at Deir Mar Musa, strangely the overwhelming majority of the pottery found at the site can be assigned to the "Mamluk" period. The period of Mamluk rule in Greater Syria (1260-1516) generally reflects an archaeological horizon that post-dates the destruction of the great ceramic production centre at al-Raqqa,  and Eastern Syria became a wasteland on the border with the Mongol Ilkhanate dynasty of Iran, leaving Damascus as the sole producer of elite quality under-glaze painted stone-paste bodied ceramics.