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Out now is the Summer edition of EVOLVE, the Natural History Museum's glossy inhouse magazine.


Once again the Library & Archives staff and collections feature numerous times:


Through the window of printed ephemera: the weird and wonderful world of menageries - by Hellen Sharman (Reader Services Librarian)


Accessing science in the twent-first century - by Natalie Beven (Electronic Resources Librarian)


The great Piltdown fraud - by Karolyn Shindler (Scientific Associate)


Elizabeth Twining - by Gemma Simmons (Publishing Assistant Editor)


Evolve is available to purchase via the Museum website, in the shop or members receive it free.




Imagine a natural history library open 24 hours a day with all your essential journals and books inside.  The

Biodiversity Heritage Library will be that Library.  It is available 24 hours, wherever you are, for free, with over

38 million pages of information already scanned and more being added everyday.


It all started about 2005 with a consortium of Natural History and Botanical Libraries meeting to organise the what

and how of a freely available resource of biodiversity literature.  The consortium was mostly based in the USA (eg

Smithsonian, Missouri Botanic Garden, American Museum of Natural History) plus the NHM and Kew. The idea was to

create a freely available resource containing the legacy literature of biodiversity taken from the collections of

the members of the consortium. The first portal was launched was in 2007.


The participating institutions realised that their collections of rare and historic scientific information that are

essential for taxonomics and systematics were available to visitors only.  Natural history is unusual in science in

that historic data is essential and must be consulted.  Hence BHL is destined to be one of the largest subject

specific resources on the Internet.




The material scanned into BHL includes anything in the public domain (upto 1923 in the USA and 100 years old in the

UK) or items where agreement has been reached with the copyright holder.  Recently material has been ingested from

sources other than the BHL consortium members such as the Internet Archive, the University of Illinois at

Urbana-Champaign.  Additionally any user may request items for digitisation (using the feedback button on the top

right of the BHL screen).


This amazing resource is free to use and is available anywhere that has Internet access, so from the Museum, from

home and out in the field.  All pages are index for scientific names using UBIO ( ).  Material can

be downloaded as a PDF or OCR, all or page by page or just images.  The bibliographic information can be downloaded

in MODS, BibTeX or EndNote format.  The information downloaded can be saved, re-used or re-purposed freely, see the

BHL Flickr site BHL also has a presence on Facebook, Twitter and

itunes, and has a blog featuring book of the week, articles by users of BHL, information about meetings and new

developments, and much more!


By promoting itself as an open digital collection, BHL allows the taxonomic names and associated bibliographic

information to be used by other digital initiatives such as Encyclopedia of life, Tropicas, Biostor and Citebank

The BHL family is expanding with collections coming online for Europe, Australia, China, Brazil and Egypt.  Also

negotiations are underway to initialise a project for Sub-Saharan Africa. 



Chris scanning at the Scribe machine.


The Natural History Museum has contributed 639 titles to BHL since scanning started in 2007.  Scanning is carried

out using a Scribe machine which incorporates a super structure that supports two cameras on sliding tracks, lights

(continuous, not flash), a bed and glass platen set at an angle, with a foot pedal for raising and lowering the

platen. The Cameras are Canon Mark IIs. Images are processed using software developed at Internet Archive

(processing includes cropping, rotating/ de-skewing, and converting from RAW to JPEG2000) and then uploaded to the

Internet Archive, where they are further converted to .pdf, .epub, etc. The scans need to be associated with the

appropriate metadata from the Library catalogue, achieved using Z39.50 technology.  Library staff are heavily

involved in the preparation of items for scanning.


Help expand the BHL user-base and have a look today.  If you need any help please contact me via


The Library catalogue is available online at Library Catalogue

If you wish to view these or any other items, please contact the library to arrange an appointment or 020 7942 5460



Anthropology / Palaeontology





The Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition in Eurasia : hypotheses and facts / editor A.P. Derevianko

Novosibirsk : Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography Press, 2005

A 2 q DER



Characteristic features of the The Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition in Eurasia : proceedings of the international symposium "Characteristic features of the Middle to Upper Paleolithic transition in Eurasia: development of culture and evolution of Homo Genus" (July 4-10, 2011, Denisova Cave, Altai) / edited by A.P. Derevianko, M.V. Shunkov

Novosibirsk : Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography SB RAS, 2011

A 3A o DER






Speleothem science : from process to past environments / Ian J. Fairchild and Andy Baker

Hoboken, N.J. : Wiley, 2012

P 11 o FAI



The Goldilocks planet : the four billion year story of Earth's climate / Jan Zalasiewicz & Mark Williams

Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2012

P 14 o ZAL



Rereading the fossil record : the growth of paleobiology as an evolutionary discipline / David Sepkoski

Chicago ; London : The University of Chicago Press, 2012

P 15C o SEP





Grasses of the Northern Territory savannas : a field guide / Sam Crowder, Boronia Saggers

Darwin, N.T. : Greening Australia (NT), 2010.

B 581.9(948) CRO


World of Tillandsias / Jan Maruška

Sibřina : Kakteen-PH-Flora, 2011.

B 582.4P171 MAR Q


Australian medicinal plants : a complete guide to identification and usage / E.V. Lassak & T. McCarthy.

Chatswood, N.S.W. : New Holland, 2011.

B 615.10(94) LAS


Encyclopedia of tropical plants : identification and cultivation of over 3000 tropical plants / Ahmed Fayaz.

Sydney : UNSW Press, 2011.



The pictorial guide to seeds of the world : an introduction into the collection, cleaning, and storage of seeds / Terry A. Woodger.

Boca Raton, Fla. : Universal-Publishers, 2011.

B 581.48 WOO





Cerambycidae : Sul-Americanos (Coleoptera). Suplemento 3 / M.H.M. Galileo

Porto Alegre : Museu de Ciencias Naturalis, 2011



6th International Congress of Dipterology : abstracts volume

[S.l. : s.n.], 2006



The genus Colias Fabricius, 1807 : Jan Haugum's annotated catalogue of the Old World Colias (Lepidoptera, Pieridae) / Josef Grieshuber, Bob Worthy, Gerardo Lamas

Pardubice : Tshikolovets, 2012



The Nymphalidae of China (Lepidoptera, Rhopalocera). Part 1, Libytheinae, Danainae, Calinaginae, Morphinae, Heliconiinae, Nymphalinae, Charaxinae, Apaturinae, Cyrestinae, Biblidinae, Limenitinae / Song-yun Lang

Pardubice : Tshikolovets, 2012



Big moths of Buenos Aires and Southern Uruguay / Rudi Mattoni, Fernando Penco

Beverly Hills, Calif. : Lepidoptera Research Foundation, 2012



Die Grossschmetterlinge Deutschlands, 2011 = The Macrolepidoptera of Germany, 2011 / Herausgeber / editors Andreas H. Segerer & Axel Hausmann ; Autoren / authors Andreas H. Segerer ... [et al.]

Budapest : Heterocera, 2011



Life in a gall : the biology and ecology of insects that live in plant galls / by Rosalind Blanche

Collingwood, Vic. : CSIRO Publishing, 2012







Islanda : Terra di ghiaccio dal cuore caldo = Iceland : a land of ice with a heart of fire = Ísland : Íslandiđ međ heita hjartađ / fotografie di Antonio Crescenzo

Torino : Museo Regionale di Scienze Naturali, 2010

L 72Da o CRE


Pacific Voyages and Exploration from the Carlsmith Collection and other sources / Anne McCormick & Derek McDonnell

Sydney : Hordern House Pty. Ltd., 2011

L 70 q MCC


The Coming of the Strangers Life in Australia 1788-1822 / Baiba Berzins

Sydney : State Library of New South Wales, 1988

L 77C o BER


A steady hand : Governor Hunter & his First Fleet sketch book / Linda Groom

Canberra : National Library of Australia, 2012

L 77Cd q GRO


Hordern House : rare books, manuscripts, paintings, prints / Anne McCormick & Derek McDonnell

Sydney : Hordern House Pty. Ltd, 1988

L 95 o MCC





The Queen's diamonds / Hugh Roberts

London : Royal Collection Enterprises Ltd. 2012

M 549.21 ROB


Meteoriti : le pietre del cielo / Erica Bittarello, Emanuele Costa, Lorenzo Mariano Gallo

Torino : Regione Piemonte : Museo regionale di scienze naturali, [2009]

M 523.68 BIT


Physico-chemical and Computational Approaches to Drug Discovery / edited by F. Javier Luque and Xavier Barril

London : Royal Society of Chemistry, 2012

M 541.1 LUC



Ornithology (Tring)


Binocular vision : the politics of representation in birdwatching field guides / Spencer Schaffner.

Amherst ; Bondon : University of Massachusetts Press, c2011.

ORNITHOLOGY 3 SCH                      


Biologiia i okhrana ptits Kamchatki. Vypusk No. 6 = The biology and conservation of the birds of Kamchatka. Issue 6 / Rossiiskaia akademiia nauk Dal'nevostochnoe otdelenie, Kamchatskii filial Tikhookeanskogo instituta geografii; [Artukhin, Yu.B., Gerasimov, Yu. N. (eds)]

Moskva : Izd-vo Tsentra ohkrany dikoi prirody, 2004.

ORNITHOLOGY 73A BIO                    


Biologiia i okhrana ptits Kamchatki. Vypusk No. 9 = The biology and conservation of the birds of Kamchatka. Issue 9 / Rossiiskaia akademiia nauk Dal'nevostochnoe otdelenie, Kamchatskii filial Tikhookeanskogo instituta geografii; [Artukhin, Yu.B., Gerasimov, Yu. N. (eds)]

Moskva : Izd-vo Tsentra ohkrany dikoi prirody, 2010.

ORNITHOLOGY 73A BIO                    


Birds of New Zealand / Julian Fitter.

info: London : Collins, 2011.

ORNITHOLOGY 77D FIT                    


Collections from the Muséum.

[Paris] : Éditions du Muséum, c2005.

PAMPHLET BOX 1                         


Extensive monitoring of arctic-alpine birds in Scotland: A pilot survey to test potential for using volunteer surveyors / John Calladine

Stirling : BTO Scotland, 2007.

ORNITHOLOGY S 103 M                    


Geographical variation in the Dunlin Calidris alpina (L.)

Liverpool : Liverpool polytechnic, Department of Biology, 1979.

ORNITHOLOGY 18(2C) GRE                 


Methods for comparing low-tide trends for Wetland Bird Survey count sectors with wider regions ; a pilot study for three wader species on the Stour and Orwell estuaries SPA / John H. Marchant, Neil Calbrade, Graham Austin

Thetford: BTO, 2012

ORNITHOLOGY S 103 M                    


Nest: The art of birds [hardback]. / Janine Burke

Crows Nest, NSW : Allen & Unwin, 2012.

ORNITHOLOGY 3A BUR                     


Ptáci - Aves. Díl III /2 (2., přepracované a doplněné vydání) / redigujĺ:  Karel Štastný a Karel Hudec

[Birds. Part 3, no. 2]

Praha : Akadmie věd Českě republiky, 2011.

ORNITHOLOGY 72M PTA                    


Ptáci - Aves. Díl III /1  (2., přepracované a doplněné vydání) / redigujĺ:  Karel Štastný a Karel Hudec

[Birds. Part 3, no. 1]

Praha : Academie věd České republiky, 2011.

ORNITHOLOGY 72M PTA                    


Type specimens of birds in the American Museum of Natural History. Part 10, Passeriformes : Emberizidae, Emberizinae, Catamblyrhynchinae, Cardinalinae, Thraupinae, and Tersininae / Mary LeCroy.

[New York] : American Museum of Natural History, c2012.

ORNITHOLOGY 97 AME                     


Video surveillance of nesting birds / editors: Christine A. Ribic, frank R. Thompson III and Pamela J. Pietz

Berkeley : University of California, 2012

EGG RIB                                




Metodologias de amostragen para avaliação das populações de lagosta : plataforma continental do Brasil = Metodologías de muestreo para la evaluación de las poblaciones de langosta : plataforma continental de Brasil / Autores Raùl Cruz Izquierdo ... [et al.].

Fortaleza : Universidade Federal do Ceará/LABOMAR/ Núcleo de Audiovisual e Multimeios, 2011



The Banggai cardinalfish : natural history, conservation, and culture of Pterapogon kauderni / Alejandro A. Vagelli

Hoboken, NJ : Wiley-Blackwell, 2011



The Fish Parasite Fauna and the Fish of Lake Prespa = Ribnatparazitofačina i ribite od prespanskoto ezepo / Nikola Hristovski, Stojmir Stojanovski, Trajče Talevski, Dijana Blažeković-Dimovska

Bitola, Macedonia : National and University Library, 2012



Horse : from Arabia to Royal Ascot / John Curtis and Nigel Tallis ; with the assistance of Astrid Johansen

London : British Museum, 2012



Atlas of Florida fossil shells : pliocene and pleistocene marine gastopods / Edward J. Petuch

Evanston, Ill. : Chicago Spectrum, 1994



Care and display of books workshop


19th September 2012

Natural History Museum



This workshop introduces the key elements of good practice for the care and display of books through a series of presentations, videos and practical sessions.  This introductory workshop is suitable for Library staff and Archivists and all those with responsibility for book collections.


Subjects included in the workshop:

  • Threats to Library collections
  • The Structure of books
  • Book Curation
  • Basic book repair - theory
  • Bindings: materials and spine structures
  • Temporary Book Display


The workshop is led by Museum Library Staff:


Paper Conservator:  Eleanor Russell – joined the Library & Archives team in 2011. She was previously at the British Library specialising in art on paper, and prior to this she worked at the British Museum, the National Archives and the St. Paul's Cathedral architectural archives.



Special Collections Librarian: Lisa Di Tommaso – has worked in both the General & Zoology and Earth Sciences Libraries with the library’s special collections, and has a particular interest in book conservation.



This workshop held at the Natural History Museum starts at 10.00am and will finish at 5pm.  The course fee of £175 includes tea, coffee and lunch. Please advise us of any special dietary requirements.


For a booking form or for further information please contact the Library & Archives


Hurry places are limited!


John Johnson Printed Ephemera Archive


This digitised and fully searchable archive is one of the UK’s most important collections of

printed ephemera, housed in the Bodleian Library. The NHM Library has a academic licence to this

resource and it is accessible for Library members via the Reading Room.


It would be useful to anyone interested in cultural and social history, advertising, public entertainment, museum studies, exhibitions and design. 


For more information visit the John Johnson website






The Library catalogue is available online at Library Catalogue

If you wish to view these or any other items, please contact the library to arrange an appointment or 020 7942 5460

Anthropology / Palaeontology



The geology of Ben Nevis and Glen Coe and the surrounding country : explanation of geological sheet 53 / by E.B. Bailey and H.B. Maufe ... [et al.]

Edinburgh : HMSO, 1960, 1976 printing.

P 72Aa o BAI




Methods in bryological research, newly revised edition / edited by The 40th Commemorative Publication Committee

Japan : Bryological Society of Japan, 2011.



Illustrated grasses of Korea /|c[Korea National Arboretum]

[Seoul] : Korea National Herbarium, 2011.

581.9(519) ILL


Conservation checklist of the trees of Uganda / Kalema, James

Kew : Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, 2012.

581.9(676.1) KAL


UK PlantSci 2012 : SEB Sponsored Symposium / John Innes Centre

Norwich : Plant Science, 2012.

58:061.63 PLA Q


That hard hot land : botanical collecting expedition in the Anglo-Egyptian Sudan 1933-1934 : undertaken by James Edgar Dandy, Cecil Graham Traquair Morison, Dunstan Skilbeck / Keenan, Mary L.

Parbold, Lancs : Keenan, 2011, cop. 2010.

93(624) KEE Q





Checklist and bibliography of the fauna of Acari (Arachnida) in Bulgaria / Petar Beron

[Sofia] : Prof. Marin Drinov Academic Pub. House, 2011



Quarantine and Identification of Bostrichidae (Coleoptera) / Chen Zhilin

[Bejing: China Agriculture Press ], 2011



Heteroptera / Ljiljana Protić

Beograd : Prirodnjački Muzej, 2011





Citizen science : public participation in environmental research / edited by Janis L. Dickinson and Rick Bonney ; foreword by Richard Louv ; afterword by John W. Fitzpatrick

Ithaca : Comstock Pub. Associates, 2012

L 66B o DIC


The rivers of Wales : a natural resource of international and historical significance / edited by D. Dudley Williams and Catherine A. Duigan

Leiden, The Netherlands : Backhuys Publishers ; Weikersheim, Germany : Margraf Publishers, 2009

L 72Aa q RIV


Painted panorama, 1800-1870: [exhibition], 1 to 30 November 1985.: paintings from the Mitchell and Dixon collections of the State Library of New South Wales

Sydney : Blaxland Gallery, 1985

L 85 o NEW





How animals see the world : comparative behavior, biology, and evolution of vision / edited by Olga F. Lazareva, Toru Shimizu, and Edward A. Wasserman.

Oxford ; New York : Oxford University Press, 2012.

Z 10A o LAZ


Biology and management of the world Tarpon and Bonefish fisheries / edited by Jerald S. Ault.

Boca Raton [Fla.] ; London : CRC Press, 2008

Z 67 o AUL


The Library catalogue is available online at Library Catalogue

If you wish to view these or any other items, please contact the library to arrange an appointment or 020 7942 5460

Anthropology / Palaeontology




Il Cervino è africano? : storia dell'evoluzione geologica delle Alpi e della terra / Michel Marthaler ; edizione italiana a cura di Piercarlo Gabriele.

Biella : Eventi & Progetti ; Torino : Museo regionale di scienze naturali, [2010]

P 72I o MAR





Diatom diversity in streams of the Tatra National Park (Poland) as indicator of environmental conditions / Barbara Kawecka

Krakow : W. Szafer Institute of Botany, Polish Academy of Sciences, 2012



Current advances in algal taxonomy and Its applications : phylogenetic, ecological and applied perspective / edited by Konrad Wolowski ... [et al.]

Kraków : W. Szafer Institute of Botany, Polish Academy of Sciences, 2012.

ALGAE 582.26 WOL


Catálogo de la flora y vegetación de los valles de la vertiente occidental de los Andes de la Cordillera de Mérida =Catalogue of the flora and vegetation of the valleys of the western slope of the Andes of the Cordillera de Mérida / Giuseppe Bono.

Firenze : Centro Studi Erbario Tropicale, 2010.

581.9(87) BON Q


Flora Iakutii : geograficheskii i ekologicheskii aspekty / otv. redaktor [...] A.A. Egorova

Flora of the Sakha (Yakutia) Repubic : geographical and ecological aspects

Novosibirsk : Nauka, 2010.

581.9(57) KUZ


Botanici dell'ottocento in Liguri : atti del convegno, Genova, 25 ottobre 2002, Chiavari, 26 ottobre 2002 / a cura di Salvatore Gentile.

Genova : Accademia ligure di scienze e lettere, 2003.

92(4) GEN



Ecological photograph handbook of insects in Gaoligongshan

Ha'erbin Shi : Dongbei lin ye da xue chu ban she, 2011

E 73H o ZHA


Ecology and evolution of dung beetles / edited by Leigh W. Simmons & T. James Ridsdill-Smith.

Chichester, West Sussex, UK ; Hoboken, N.J. : Wiley-Blackwell, 2011.



Lichinki zhukov-listoedov Rossii / IU. M. Zaitsev, L. N. Medvedev

Moskva : Tovarishchestvo nauchnykh izdanii KMK, 2009.



[Fruit flies] (Diptera: Tephritidae: Dacinae:Trypetonae:Tephritidae)= Fruit Flies (Diptera:Trypetinae:Dacinae:Trypetinae:Trypetinae) / editor, Liang Guangqin

[Bejing: China Agriculture Press], 2011.



Forest entomology : a global perspective / by William M. Ciesla

Chichester, West Sussex ; Hoboken, NJ : Wiley-Blackwell, 2011






The Access to the Countryside (Appeals against Works Notices) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2012

[London] : The Stationery Office, 2012

L 72Aa q GRE


Estonian mires : inventory of habitats : publication of the project "Estonian Mires Inventory Completion for Maintaining Biodiversity / compiled by Jaanus Paal and Eerik Leibak

Tartu, 2011

L 72Q q PAA


Jaminjung, Ngaliwurru and Nungali plants and animals : Aboriginal knowledge of flora and fauna from the Bradshaw and Judbarra/Gregory National Park area, north Australia / Judy Marchant Jones...[et al.].

Palmerston, N. T. : Dept. of Natural Resources, Environment, the Arts and Sport, 2011

L 77Cb o JAM


Mangarrayi and Yangman plants and animals : Aboriginal biocultural knowledge from Elsey and the Roper River, north Australia / Jessie Garalnganyjak Roberts ... [et al.].

Palmerston, N. T. : Dept. of Natural Resources, Environment, the Arts and Sport, 2011.

L 77Cb o MAN


Fish and ships! : food on the voyages of Captain Cook / foreword by Glyndwr Williams with contributions from Janet MacDonald... [et al.].

[Whitby, England : Captain Cook Museum, 2012]

L 85 q FIS




Get stuffed : the home taxidermist's handbook / Chuck Iglesias

Lewes : Ivy Press, 2007

Z 82 d IGL


I was in an Oxfam shop the other day, idly leafing through a book entitled Face of Britain: How our Genes Reveal the History of Britain,  when my eyes fell with delight upon a reproduction of a very familiar painting, an imaginative re-creation of Neanderthal family life. I felt a warm glow of affection for the picture not just because I knew the artist but because it instantly took me back to my childhood which, perhaps surprisingly in such a context , is represented in the painting.  I was only too happy to contribute to charity as I purchased the book, pleased to have a copy of this much-reproduced image, which happens to depict my brother and me as childish little Neanderthals having a bit of a scrap.


The original watercolour was painted in 1950 by Maurice Wilson (1914-1987) for the Natural History Museum where he became a friend of my father Dr Kenneth Oakley (1911-1981), best known for his role in helping expose the Piltdown Hoax. The Face book was written in 2006 by Robin McKie to accompany a Channel Four television series ,  which I had enjoyed, not least because one of the major contributors was Chris Stringer, who worked with my father at the museum in the 1970s, studying ‘Ape Men’, as I would have put it somewhat loosely as a child.


Homo neanderthalensis, Neanderthal Man by Maurice Wilson

NHM Image reference: 001983


Whenever there is some new speculation about interbreeding between Neanderthals and modern humans it's not uncommon to see Maurice's atmospheric re-creation of Neanderthal domestic life used as an illustration , as with a recent issue of Current World Archaeology (No.49). Whenever I see the painting it amuses me to think that the two small boys tussling in the background were based directly on Maurice's observations of me and my brother as kids. I hasten to add that the naked adults bear little resemblance to my parents. Well perhaps my dad...


It was when I was a grown up myself that Maurice told me that my older brother Chris and I were the models for his Neanderthal scene, based on watching us endlessly 'squabbling' at home when we were aged around six and four. I remember Maurice gleefully mimicking my mother's admonition to 'stop bickering!'

Maurice was a real character, as I recall from his regular and keenly-awaited visits to our home in Amersham, Bucks, some thirty-odd miles from London. An eccentric, bohemian dresser, he'd bound out of the car and stride up the front path clad in a long coat with string round the waist plus open-toed sandals and a raffish cravat at his neck. His hair was worn fairly long in oiled ringlets like a stereotypical gypsy, making him for years my image of what 'an artist' was like, not unlike some Agatha Christie suspect. He had a beguiling approach with children, never talking down to us but full of little tricks and jokes to keep us entertained, although it was always clear that he was deeply serious about his work as a natural history illustrator.


My parents greatly admired his artistic skill which was characterised by a deceptively simple mastery of line and shading, enriched by subtle colour washes and an overall softness of tone. Several of his paintings and prints used to adorn the walls at home in Amersham and they are still much loved in the family. One of those I inherited used to hang above my father's desk in his study, a large sketch Maurice did in April 1950 of 'Australopithecos', looking faintly melancholy and soulful, as though dimly conscious of his evolutionary fate. Whether conjuring up an imagined past in deep antiquity or simply painting feathers and fur from direct observation, there was always a warmth and humanity about Maurice's work, often caught in the poignant expressiveness of a creature's eyes.


Because of my fondness for Maurice Wilson and his art I always have a fear that his interpretations of the past - such as the 'Oakley Neanderthals' - will somehow be overtaken by modern research theories, and fade into neglect as mere historical curios. If that happens I hope the sheer quality of his artistry across the range of his output will ensure his name is not forgotten. His love of the natural world must have inspired countless children of all ages through illustrations of real beauty in their own right, as seen in museum exhibits and all manner of publication, scholarly and popular. 


As for my own curious status as a Neanderthal Kid, it's worth adding that at the height of my father's media fame over Piltdown in the mid-fifties I'd repeatedly get taunted by older boys in the street in Amersham. It would start with ''Ere, ain't your dad a boffin?' Then, sidling up to prod and shove me they would assert that I was the 'son of an ape man', with the more knowledgeable even insisting that I was actually 'descended from a Neanderthal', with all the usual knuckle-dragging gestures and heavy-browed facial expressions. Perhaps they were right, and Maurice Wilson was on to something.



by Giles Oakley


Today marks the end of an annual two week summer visit from a group of Harvard students.



Each year a group from Harvard visit the UK as part of a two month summer school which includes visits to Oxford and London. During this period they spend two weeks here in the NHM Library & Archives working on the ongoing Wallace Correspondence project. They are each given a collection of Wallace letters to transcribe during their time here, providing invaluable support to the ongoing project.



The Wallace Correspondence Project commenced in October 2010 and aims to finish in October 2013.  For more information about this exciting project visit the Wallace Correspondence Project official website.



The students are in the UK for a total of eight weeks and are funded by the David Rockefeller International Experience Grants Program (DRIEG). After they finish at the NHM this week they are attending the Harvard Summer Program course called "An exploration of evolutionary biology" at Oxford University.


Many thanks for all your hard work, it has been a pleasure having you working in the Reading Room. I'm just sorry that you had experience this years 'English Summer'!




How wonderful to see the product of another inspired visit to the Natural History Museum!


The Library & Archives will be open during the Olympics (27 July-12 Aug 2012).


However our opening hours will be adjusted to take into account travel times around London. Public access to the reading room will be Tuesday to Friday 11.00-15.00.


Opening hours for the Paralympic games may be similarly adjusted, please await further announcements.


If you wish to make an appointment to visit the Library & Archives please email us / or ring us 020 7942 5460 (Monday-Friday 10.00 - 16.30)


The Library catalogue is available online at Library Catalogue

If you wish to view these or any other items, please contact the library to arrange an appointment or 020 7942 5460



Anthropology / Palaeontology



Erinaceomorpha and Soricomorpha (Insectivora, Mammalia) from the late Miocene of Ukraine / Barbara Rzebik-Kowalska and Valentin A. Nesin.

Kraków : Institute of Systematics and Evolution of Animals, Polish Academy of Sciences, 2010.

P 17 o RZE




Archaeomalacology revisited : non-dietary use of molluscs in archaeological settings : proceedings of the archaeomalacology sessions at the 10th ICAZ Conference, Mexico City, 2006 / edited by Canan Çakirlar

Oxford ; Oakville : Oxbow Books, 2011

A 3 o CAK


The Palaeolithic origins of human burial / Paul Pettitt.

Milton Park, Abingdon, Oxon ; New York : Routledge, 2011

A 6B o PET


African genesis : perspectives on hominid evolution / edited by Sally C. Reynolds, Andrew Gallagher

Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2012.

A 7 o REY





Systematics, biodiversity and ecology of lichens / editors: Ingvar Kärnefelt, Mark R. D. Seaward & Arne Thell

Stuttgart : J. Cramer, 2012.



Flora del Bajio y de Regiones Adyacentes. Fasciculo 176, Familia Typhaceae / por Jaime Raúl Bonilla-Barbosa y Betzy Santamaria Araúl

Pátzcuaro, México : Instituto de Ecologia, 2012.

B 581.9(79P9) FLO


Flora del Bajio y de Regiones Adyacentes. Fasciculo 175, Phrymaceae / por Emmanuel Pérez-Calix

Pátzcuaro, México : Instituto de Ecologia, 2012.

B 581.9(79P9) FLO


Flora del Valle de Tehuácan-Cuicatlán. Fascículo 84, Anacampserotaceae / Gilberto Ocampo-Acosta

Mexico : Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, 2011.

B 581.9(79P9) SOU


Flora del Valle de Tehuácan-Cuicatlán. Fascículo 85, Plumbaginaceae / Silvia Zumaya-Mendoza

Mexico : Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, 2011.

B 581.9(79P9) SOU


Flora del Valle de Tehuácan-Cuicatlán. Fascículo 86, Sapindaceae / Jorge Calónico-Soto

Mexico : Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico, 2011.

B 581.9(79P9) SOU


Plants of Arizona : a field guide / Anne Orth Epple ; photography by Lewis E. Epple.

Guilford, Conn. : FalconGuides, 2012.

B 581.9(791) EPP


Vascular plants of the greater Yellowstone area : annotated catalog and atlas / by Erwin F. Evert.

Park Ridge, Ill. : Erwin F. Evert, 2010.

B 581.9(787) EVE Q




Alticinae of Indochina / Lev N. Medvedev

Moscow : KMK scientific Press, 2009



Bee conservation : evidence for the effects of interventions / Lynn V. Dicks, David A. Showler & William J. Sutherland

Exeter : Pelagic, 2010



Bumblebees of Norfolk / Nick Owens, David Richmond

[Norwich] : Norfolk and Norwich Naturalists' Society, 2012





The SAGE handbook of biogeography / edited by Andrew C. Millington, Mark A. Blumler, and Udo Schickhoff

Los Angeles ; London : SAGE, 2011

L 10E o MIL


The value of species / Edward L. McCord

New Haven ; London: Yale University Press, 2012

L 65A o MCC


Biodiversity of western Rhodopes (Bulgaria and Greece). II / editor, Petar Beron.

Sofia : Pensoft : National Museum of Natural History, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, 2011

L 72O o BER


Captain Cook : master of the seas / Frank McLynn

New Haven : Yale University Press, 2011




Information 2.0 : new models of information production, distribution and consumption / Martin De Saulles.

London : Facet, 2012



Ambient findability / Peter Morville

Sebastopol, CA : O'Reilly, 2005.





Statistics in volcanology / edited by H.M. Mader ... [et al.]

London : Geological Society, 2006

M 551.21 MAD





Biology of sharks and their relatives / editors, Jeffrey C. Carrier, John A. Musick, Michael R. Heithaus. 2nd ed

Boca Raton : Taylor & Francis Group, 2012



Claude Gibney Finch-Davies was born in Dehli, India on 24th May 1875. He became a highly accomplished painter and ornithologist and is regarded as one of the finest bird artists alongside John Gould, James John Audobon and William MacGillivray.



finch davies 002.jpg




In keeping with customs of the Victorian era, Claude was sent to school in England at the age of six. Here he would remain until he enlisted in the British army in 1893. Claude was posted to various remote places in the Southern Cape of South Africa and this is where his interest in natural history was ignited. He would spend a large amount of his free time hunting, collecting and drawing birds. Even during the South African War, he continued to observe birds, and later used this information to incorporate into his notes.


Claude soon gained a reputation for his ornithological knowledge and people would bring him specimens or reports of sightings. He began to build a professional network with local museums and libraries, particularly the Transvaal Museum in Pretoria. In 1907 Claude joined the South African Ornithologists’ Union and in the same year his first scientific paper was published in its journal.




finch davies 003.jpg



The photograph below displays his drawings in one of his field notebooks. He provided vast notes about each of his illustrations, making various observations and on some pages even adding a feather from the bird he is depicted to accompany his work. This particular notebook held in the NHM Library's zoology collection was never published. Claude did however provide illustrations for some major publications, for example, Boyd Robert Horsburgh’s Game Birds and Water Fowl of South Africa, 1912.



finch davies 001.jpg



During the summer of 1915 Claude was sent to Cape Town for medical attention. It is presumed that this is where he met his future wife Aileen Finch. Aileen’s father agreed this marriage could go ahead, on the condition that they kept the name Finch. The couple married on 4th August 1916. They went on to have three children together; William Simon Charles, Bethea Alice, and Hugh Claude.



In 1920 Claude's reputation was threatened when he was accused of stealing plates from books in the Transvaal Museum and the South African Museum in Cape Town. He admitted to this accusation and put it down to ‘collector’s madness’. Despite not being charged he handed over 29 of his beautiful sketchbooks as compensation. The shame and humiliation of these revelations was all too much and he died soon after.


Sarah Sworder

Reader Services Information Assistant


The Library catalogue is available online at Library Catalogue

If you wish to view these or any other items, please contact the library to arrange an appointment or 020 7942 5460


Anthropology / Palaeontology

Modern origins : a North African perspective / edited by Jean-Jacques Hublin, Shannon P. McPherron

Dordrecht ; New York : Springer, 2012

A 7 q HUB



Caves in context : the cultural significance of caves and rockshelters in Europe / edited by Knut Andreas Bergsvik and Robin Skeates

Oakville, CT : Oxbow Books, 2012

A 3 q BER



Neanderthals in Wales : Pontnewydd and the Elwy valley caves / edited by Stephen Aldhouse-Green, Rick Peterson and Elizabeth A. Walker

Oakville, CT : Oxbow Books, 2012

A 6 q ALD




Bildatlas der Moose Deutschlands. Fasc. 1, Grimmiaceae. Fasc. 1b, Sphagnaceae / Michael Lüth

Freiburg : Michael Lüth, 2011.




Bildatlas der Moose Deutschlands. Fasc. 7, Brachytheciaceae bis Sematophyllaceae / Michael Lüth

Freiburg : Michael Lüth, 2010.




Canyon Country wildflowers : a guide to common wildflowers, shrubs and trees / Damian Fagan

2nd ed.

Guilford, Conn. ; Helena, Mont : Falcon Press, 2012.

581.9(792) FAG



Sonoran Desert wildflowers : a guide to common plants / Richard Spellenberg 2nd ed.

Connecticut : Globe Pequot Pr 2012.

581.9(791) SPE



Die Farnpflanzen Südtirols / Reinhold Beck, Thomas Wilhalm

Bolzano, Italy : Naturmuseum Südtirol, 2010.

FERNS 582.35(436) BEC F



The dragonflies of Hong Kong / Tam Tze-wai ... [et al.], Agriculture, Fisheries and Conservation Department = Xianggang qing ting / Yu nong zi ran hu li shu, Tan Zihui ... [deng].

Hong Kong : Friends of the Country Parks : Cosmos Books, 2011




Geheimnisvolle Pflanzengallen : ein Bestimmungsbuch für Pflanzen- und Insektenfreunde / Heiko Bellmann

Wiebelsheim : Quelle & Meyer, 2012

E 10C o BEL



Chiapas : estudios sobre su diveridad biológica / Fernando Álvarez (coordinator general)

México : UNAM, 2011

L 72H q ALV



Statistics in volcanology / edited by H.M. Mader ... [et al.]

London : Geological Society, 2006

M 551.21 MAD


Ornithology (Tring)

Atles dels ocells nidificants de Catalunya, 1999-2002 = Catalan breeding bird atlas, 1999-2002 / editat per Joan Estrada ... [et al.].

Barcelona : Lynx Edicions, 2004.




The complete illustrated encyclopedia of birds of the world : the ultimate reference source and identifier for 1600 birds, profiling habitat, plummage, nesting and food / David Alderton ; with illustrations by Peter Barrett.

London : Lorenz, 2012.




The Kirtland's warbler : the story of a bird's fight against extinction and the people who saved it / William Rapai.

Ann Arbor : University of Michigan Press, c2012.




Macao Bird Report

[S.l., China] : Jinan Univerisity Press, 2012




Ornitologia italiana : identificazione, distribuzione, consistenza e movimenti degli uccelli italiani. Vol. 7, Paridae - Corvidae / Pierandrea Brichetti, Giancarlo Fracasso ; disegni di Silvia Gandini.

Bologna : Oasi A. Perdisa, 2003-

ORNITHOLOGY 72I BRI                        




The owl that fell from the sky : stories of a museum curator / Brian Gill.

Wellington, N.Z. : Awa Press, 2012.



In the run up to the landmark Rio+20 Earth Summit in Brasil this week, the Open Access resource – Sustainability: Science, Practice and Policy - has highlighted some of the key areas being discussed this year: ocean management; disasters; water; employment; food; cities; energy data in the article Creating the future we want.


This ejournal is freely available via Open Access and has a wealth of information in all areas related to sustainability and the environment.  See the Researchers toolkit for analyising datasets, a visualisation tool for manipulating data and keep up to date with current issues and posts via the SSPP blog.                                                                                                    



Read this and more reviews of the latest news and views in sustainability and environment with this peer-reviewed  ejournal. This journal is available on the NHM Library catalogue.          

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