Gift News:
Gift Transforms Sixth Floor Galleries

Mammal skulls exhibit

New displays of mammal skulls, the depths of biodiversity, microbes and parasites are among the dramatic changes made possible by a gift from two Bellevue, Washington donors.

Benjamin and Margaret Hall of Bellevue, Wash., gave $100,000 in memory of Benjamin Hall’s father , E. Raymond Hall, a former director of the museum whose research focused on mammals.

The entire south gallery has been transformed into a wide, open space with exhibits that bring recent science of KU Biodiversity Institute curators and graduate students into public view. 

New exhibits include Cleared and Stained, which displays specimens that have been treated with enzymes and dyes that help scientists study animal structure and characteristics. An exhibit showing the work of parasitologist Kirsten Jensen reveals the “faces” of the parasites of sharks and rays. Microbes — and their significance to human health — are presented, as is the wide variety of biodiversity of the planet.

There also will be an exhibit dedicated to the vast biodiversity of species on earth.

The renovations include electrical, heating and air conditioning upgrades made possible by $1 million in American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds granted through the Board of Regents.

The gallery will be rededicated in summer 2014.