The collections area of the Musée de la nature et des sciencesCredit: Musée de la nature et des sciences
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Welcome to the conservation rooms of the Musée de la nature et des sciences where you will discover close to 65,000 natural science objects and specimens. Many of these were originally used in teaching institutions in the mid 19th and early 20th centuries. The diversity of Quebec and Canadian wildlife and flora is very well represented. A number of specimens originating from the Americas and other continents round out the collections.
The hummingbird collection
A few specimens of hummingbirds from the collectionCredit: Musée de la nature et des sciences
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The hummingbird collection is composed of 251 specimens, with 236 mounted birds, 6 nests, 3 eggs and 6 skins. Among the 94 species and sub-species represented in the collection, only one is Canadian - the Ruby-throated Hummingbird.
Educational and scientific function
The exhibition: Hummingbirds of the AmericasCredit: Musée de la nature et des sciences
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The museum's collections have an educational and scientific function. To introduce the collections to the Canadian public, a number of specimens are presented in a traveling exhibition entitled "Hummingbirds of the Americas." The information accompanying each of the specimens - the date and location of the collecting, for example - is a valuable tool for scientists.
A little bit of history
A little bit of historyLepidopyga sp.Credit: Musée de la nature et des sciences
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A great many hummingbirds were collected at the beginning of the 20th century by South and Central American specialized merchants, a profession that fortunately no longer exists today. The tags attached to the specimens provide tangible evidence of these collectors from the past, among them S. Briceno Gabaldon and Sons of Venezuela, Carlos Olalla and Sons from Ecuador and Adolphe Boucard from France.
The pride of the collection
The jewel of the collectionCredit: Musée de la nature et des sciences
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This case displays several birds, including six hummingbirds. It was prepared and mounted by John G. Bell (1812-1899), , (year) taxidermist and expedition companion of James Audubon (1785-1851). It was created for Peale's Museum, the first museum in America.