San Diego Natural History Museum--Your Nature Connection[San Diego Natural History Museum: Collections Care & Conservation]
Who uses the specimens?

Teachers and Museum Docents
You do!

stamp with Loggerhead Shrike and Boxthorn

For scientific accuracy, artist Lee Schotseider used skins of Loggerhead Shrikes and herbarium specimens of Lycium californicum from the collections of the San Diego Natural History Museum as references when painting this stamp.

Caring for Collections


Have you ever used a field guide to identify that bird you saw in your backyard? Or that little squirrel-like mammal that just scooted off through the rocks? Or that flower you saw in the park?

Artists rely heavily on collections of specimens when they create the illustrations for field guides. They need to see details to make accurate paintings. Different coloration and shapes help you see the differences between the chipmunk and the ground squirrel -- or the coyote and the neighbor's scrawny dog.

Have you seen dioramas at a museum? Paintings in the background of exhibits are based on specimens.

Shorebirds from exhibit at SDNHM, photo by T. Murray

and you
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Collections | Caring for Collections | BRCC