[Taxacom] Natural History Collections Under Fire

John Grehan calabar.john at gmail.com
Wed Mar 29 10:19:03 CDT 2017

Here's a slightly different take on the collection situation:


By mid-July the fish and plant collections of the University of Louisiana
Monroe Museum of Natural History will hopefully have a new home, according
to Dr. Eric Pani, Vice President for Academic Affairs.

Several factors led to the decision to donate  the collections, which have
been stored in Brown Stadium since the museum was moved to Hanna Hall last
year. Many of the specimens are preserved in flammable liquid and must be
kept in a facility with a fire sprinkler system.

"Unfortunately, the fiscal situation facing the university over the years
requires us to make choices like this. We can no longer afford to store the
collections and provide all of the public services we have in the past,"
Pani said.

Last week Pani told leaders of the College of Arts, Education and Sciences,
which manages the museum, of the decision. He met with them again this
week. He said the collections, except for some of the teaching specimens,
will be donated and relocated by mid-July. The CAES people asked for 48
hours to determine if space on campus could be found and the entire
collection retained.

Tuesday posts on social media could have been interpreted that the
collection would be destroyed in a few hours.

Pani addressed other statements on social media, including that there would
be no expansion of the museum. He clarified that expansion will be
postponed for about two years while another project is underway.

The collections in Hanna Hall are open for public viewing; the specimens in
Brown Stadium are for research.

Pani said renovations and improvements to the track at Brown Stadium are
slated to begin in the summer. The work will raise the track to sanctioned
status, allowing meets to be held there and other schools to host track and
field competitions.  Thus, it will provide an economic development boost
for the region.

"It would be an honor for the university to donate the collection to an
organization with the space to preserve and display it, and we fully expect
to find such a facility as soon as possible," Pani said.

On Wed, Mar 29, 2017 at 12:15 AM, S.L. Gardner <sgardner1 at unl.edu> wrote:

> People!
> We cannot stand by while people throw away the record of life on earth.
> Write a letter to *pani at ulm.edu* and point out his stupidity and indicate
> that his decision will DECREASE the long-term funding of his university.
> Students want to learn natural history, they hunger for knowledge of the
> animals and plants on our earth. This is the only place we have -earth- it
> is more than a sporting venue. Someone like Pani does not have a clue about
> our earth. Tell him.
> Scott Gardner
> http://gizmodo.com/university-threatens-destruction-of-milli
> ons-of-specime-1793745389?utm_campaign=socialflow_gizmodo_
> facebook&utm_source=gizmodo_facebook&utm_medium=socialflow
> <http://gizmodo.com/university-threatens-destruction-of-
> millions-of-specime-1793745389?utm_campaign=socialflow_gizmodo_facebook&
> utm_source=gizmodo_facebook&utm_medium=socialflow>
> University Threatens Destruction of Millions of Specimens if Museum of
> Natural History Collection Not Relocated [Updated] <
> http://gizmodo.com/university-threatens-destruction-of-
> millions-of-specime-1793745389?utm_campaign=socialflow_gizmodo_facebook&
> utm_source=gizmodo_facebook&utm_medium=socialflow>
> gizmodo.com
> According to a Facebook post from the University of Louisiana at Monroe
> Museum of Natural History, administrators have demanded that 6.5 million
> plant and fish specimens must find a new home on campus within 48 hours or
> they will be have to be donated or destroyed. Apparently, space is needed
> for the track team.
> --
> *~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
> Scott Lyell Gardner, Ph.D.
> Curator and Professor
> Harold W. Manter Laboratory of Parasitology
> W-529 Nebraska Hall
> University of Nebraska State Museum and
> School of Biological Sciences
> University of Nebraska - Lincoln
> Lincoln, Nebraska 68588-0514
> e-mail:   slg at unl.edu
> Web:      http://hwml.unl.edu
> ASP Page: http://asp.unl.edu
> SKYPE:    nemataslg
> ---------------------------
> Phone:    402-472-3334
> Fax:      402-472-8949
> Cell:     402-540-9310
> "If we don't work to describe and preserve biodiversity now,
> our descendants will be very upset."  -slg
> *~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*
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