Tuesday, 15 February 2011

Researching the trade in Thylacine specimens

Tasmanian Tiger authority Kathryn Medlock has been researching the 19th century records at the Australian Museum Archives - and has also found time to appear in a Japanese documentary (above) on the Thylacine.

Recently the carefully preserved administrative records of the Australian Museum revealed new information to Medlock, who is the Senior Curator Vertebrate Zoology at the Tasmanian Museum and Art Gallery.

Kathryn (a PhD candidate at the Australian National University) spent a week researching in the Australian Museum Archives. Kathryn found valuable information amongst the museum’s 19th century correspondence, exchange schedules, photographs and published material.

She is examining the collection and trade of the infamous thylacine (often referred to as the “Tasmanian tiger”). Whilst Museums continue to collect natural history specimens they no longer “trade” specimens to build their collections. Kathryn’s research will help the Museum understand the development of this change in Museum science.

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