NatSCA Digital Digest


NatSCA 2

Your weekly round-up of news and events happening in the world of natural sciences

Conferences and Workshops

As PalaeoSam mentioned in the last Digital Digest, the Symposium of Vertebrate Palaeontolotgy and Comparative Anatomy is on next week. It is my personal palaeo highlight of the year and so am sad that I will miss it this year. (Though not too sad given I am missing it to be in Italy for the Grand Prix.) If you are attending and would like to do a super write up of the weeks’ events, please do let us know.  I look forward to experiencing SVPCA through the eyes of a blogger.


Those of you who are fans of F1 will know why this car is relevant to natural history (image in public domain)


Not really on the subject of natural history, but a topic that will touch the heart of any museum professional or visitor. ISIS have taken even more away from the us, the global nation, via the destruction of an Ancient temple in Palmyra. These open air museums are original sites of cultural heritage and are irreplaceable once gone. Not at the top of the list of the most tragic event of the last couple of weeks by any means, but a sad day for museums nevertheless.

News from the Blogosphere

The #MuseumInstaSwap phenomenon has launched as staff from some of the top museums in London (including the NHM and the Horniman) swap museums and take to social media to chat about it. An article in Time Out nicely summarises what is going on but a lot of the museums involved have their own exciting blogs on it worth looking up. Hence this is in the News from the Blogosphere section, see?

Highlights from the Papers

More and more, scientists are relying on Citizen science, as a means of collecting data. The mode of research is especially important in fields such as marine biology where the incorporation of sightings made by anglers, for example, can add significantly increase the size of datasets. An article in Nature called Rise of the Citizen Scientist explores the good the bad and the ugly of this practice as a research tool.


As ever, if you would like to write a blog for NatSCA on anything natural sciences related, give us an online shout

NatSCA Digital Digest

A mounted skeleton of a fruitbat leers at the cameraYour weekly round-up of news and events happening in the world of natural sciences


Curator of Natural Sciences, Tullie House Museum. Fixed term for 12 months (with potential for extentsion). Tullie House is also looking for a Collections Access Manager at the moment.

Operations and Project Officer, Lyme Regis Museum. A great opportunity to work on the iconic Jurassic Coast.

UK Flora Collections Assistant, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. An interesting role combining field work, lab work, and collections!

As always, see out jobs page for more opportunities.


SVPCA (The Symposium of Vertebrate Palaeontology and Comparative Anatomy) is coming up on 29th August – 4th September. This year it is to be held at the National Oceanography Centre in Southampton.

#AskACurator Day is back on Twitter on 16th September. It’s a great way for people to talk to museum staff who are normally ‘behind the scenes’, and for us to get exposure for the amazing work we all do with our collections.

Around the Web

Dinosaurs on tour: Dippy the Diplodocus will be leaving his home at the NHM for a holiday, and the museum is looking for host venues. Must have large gallery.

The genome of the kiwi (Apteryx mantelli) has been sequenced, revealing insights into its strange physiology.

Giant animals that are almost impossible to find! Did you know that the largest stick insect recorded is in the collection of the Natural History Museum (NHM), and is over half a metre long?

Brymbo Fossil Forest in Wrexham has been designated as a Site of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI), protecting the future of its precious 300 million year-old fossils. Sadly, many fossils were lost in arson attacks on the site last year.