ROM Research

Monthly Archive: December ROM

The Woman Behind the Biggest Heart in the World

Posted: August 2, 2017 - 19:12 , by Stacey Kerr
ROM Mammalogy technician Jacqueline Miller with sword in hand in a fencing match - always up for a challenge. Photo credit Jacqueline Miller

Guest Blog written by 2017 Environmental Visual Communication student Fenella Hood

Knife in hand and knee-deep in rotting blubber, Jacqueline Miller is about to do something that has never been done before: carve out a blue whale's heart for preservation. Enveloped in its stench and racing against decay, she cuts deep into the tissue beneath, sure in her knowledge of anatomy but ever wondering: Will this even work? Read on to learn more about one of the team members behind the world's biggest heart in this blog by EVC student Fennella Hood.

A Superior BioBlitz

Posted: July 27, 2017 - 15:46 , by Stacey Kerr
The insect team travels with nets in hand on a chilly morning towards the dock. Photo by Adil Darvesh

Guest blog written by 2017 Environmental Visual Communication student Adil Darvesh

Most BioBlitzes tend to span a 24-hour period, but this was no typical BioBlitz. Read on to see what made the Big Trout Bay BioBlitz on the North shore of Lake Superior different!

Tokummia, a new fossil species from the Burgess Shale traces origin of ants, millipedes and lobsters.

Posted: April 26, 2017 - 13:00 , by admin
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Students working at fossil site on the mountain side.

Guest Blog by Cédric Aria, recent PhD graduate from Dept. of Ecology and Evolutionary, UofT, who was based at the ROM. Currently a post-doctoral researcher at the Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology.

ROM Research: The Family Camera Network

Posted: April 11, 2017 - 12:45 , by Jennifer Orpana
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Photo of three people in collection storage looking at a photo

The Family Camera Network is a SSHRC-funded, three-year research project that brings together over 25 researchers and 6 cultural and educational institutions to conduct a multi-partner scholarly study of family photographs. An important part of this project is creating public archives at the ROM and the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives that will collect and preserve family photographs and their stories.

Sebastian Kvist: Leech Hunter

Posted: October 25, 2016 - 13:34 , by Stacey Kerr
A portrait photo of Sebastian Kvist out in front of a swamp in the field in Minnesota, U.S.A. Photo by Vincent Luk

Guest blog by Environmental Visual Communication student Sally McIntyre

When most people think about the Royal Ontario Museum (ROM), they think of dinosaurs or mummies. However, it is the invertebrates that live on the ocean floor and crawl through the soil that make up the most diverse collection at the ROM. So who holds the daunting position of keeper of this vast museum collection? Meet Dr. Sebastian Kvist: Leech Hunter. 

Wildlife Photography: Behind the Camera

Posted: March 15, 2016 - 12:24 , by Stacey Kerr
A bolt of lightning streaks across a purple sky over the mountains and rainforests of Sri Lanka

Guest Blog written by Environmental Visual Communication students Aisha Parkhill-Goyette and Jeff Dickie

Imagine you are deep in the jungle of Sri Lanka. You find yourself blinded by the pouring rain, knee deep in a rushing river, desperately trying not to fall in. Lightning strikes only meters away, but instead you are worried about the small tickle by your left elbow, and you are hoping that it is not one of the dozens of land leeches that keep falling onto you from the trees above. Not everyone has what it takes to be a wildlife photographer. It takes a special kind of dedication and a special kind of person - someone who is just as wild as the creatures they are trying to capture on camera.

EVC Students Jeff and Aisha interviewed a pair of up-and-coming wildlife photographers who travelled with ROM mammalogist Burton Lim to Sri Lanka last fall, to share some stories about what it's like behind the camera.

Mexican Cartel lands are home to a newly described species: Goode’s Thornscrub Tortoise

Posted: February 10, 2016 - 12:00 , by Dave Ireland
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A new species of tortoise named Goode’s Thornscrub Tortoise, described today by Dr. Robert (Bob) Murphy and colleagues in the Journal ZooKeys. Photo taken in Reserva Monte Mojino, Sonora, Mexico, 24 August, 2013 Photo by Taylor Edwards

ROM curator of reptiles and amphibians, Dr. Bob Murphy and a team of international scientists use leading edge genetic techniques and dangerous fieldwork activities to describe a new species of tortoise in Mexico and shine light on the conservation status of other rare and threatened tortoises from the region

Blue Whale Update: From Trenton with Love

Posted: December 22, 2015 - 11:25 , by Stacey Kerr
It took a team of seven people to lift the blue whale heart enough to finish wrapping it. Photo by Stacey Lee Kerr

It’s that time of year where many of us are pretty focused on the holidays. Spending time with family and friends, baking and eating loads of treats, and - let’s be honest - the gifts. Finding them, buying them, wrapping them, and getting them to where they need to go, whether the destination is under the Christmas tree, or to be mailed to relatives somewhere else around the world.

So, given that everybody’s in this present-logistics state of mind, we have a gift-wrapping question for you… how do you ship a blue whale heart?

The ROM's Very Own Batman Returns

Posted: October 13, 2015 - 14:00 , by Stacey Kerr
The ROM’s very own ‘Batman’, Assistant Curator of Mammalogy, Dr. Burton Lim with "bat wings" outlined with light in a long exposure photo. Credit: Vincent Luk

ROM Biodiversity (@ROMBiodiversity) was in the fields and forests of Sri Lanka for an intense four weeks between Aug 23 - Sept 19, 2015, completing the first comprehensive survey of bats and other small mammals that live on the island in close to 80 years. 

ROM in the Field: Bats, Barcoding, and a Baby

Posted: September 8, 2015 - 16:15 , by Stacey Kerr
A tube-nosed bat (Murina cyclotis) in flight. Photo by Vincent Luk

ROM Biodiversity (@ROMBiodiversity) is in the fields and forests of Sri Lanka for an intense four weeks doing the first comprehensive survey of bats and other small mammals in close to 80 years. Follow the South Asian adventure on social media with #ROMSriLanka, and join Burton Lim and the Team LIVE from the field on September 10 at noon: https://www.rom.on.ca/en/activities-programs/events-calendar/hangout-with-our-rom-biodiversity-team-in-sri-lanka