The Art and Science of an Ornithology Collection

A collaborative exhibition featuring the Collection of Birds from the Biodiversity Research and Teaching Collections.

Peregrine Falcon (Falco peregrinus), TCWC 24734, Refugio County Texas.

SEAD Gallery; September 19th – November 20th

Scarlet-chested Sunbird (Chalcomitra senegalensis), TCWC 15722 Benin, Alibori Department.

Texas A&M University houses many unique and valuable research collections, one of which is the Collection of Birds at the Biodiversity Research and Teaching Collections. This research collection contains over 25,000 specimens from 59 countries. Holdings include representatives of 1,685 species, 798 genera, and 165 families. The majority of specimens are prepared as dry skins; however, the collections include nearly 1,500 skeletons, 300 fluid preserved specimens, 400 egg sets and 3000 wings. The Collection also maintains a rapidly growing collection of tissues (nearly 7,000) and blood samples associated with voucher specimens suitable for genomic study.  As with other research collections, the Collection of Birds is rarely open to the public, as it is primarily used by researchers to address a broad spectrum of questions from the fields of conservation genetics, disease ecology, biodiversity science, and the discovery of species.

SEAD Gallery is a community and economic development project by Advent GX. Featuring regular exhibits by local, state and international artists, SEAD Gallery provides a downtown venue for arts and cultural exchange. SEAD Gallery provides a venue to explore collaborations across the disciplines of Science, Engineering, Art and Design. Through exhibits and events, Advent GX seeks to encourage innovation and discover new ways to understand and positively impact our communities and our world. The name SEAD is inspired by the work of the Network for Science, Engineering, Art and Design, which facilitates research, dialogue, and communication among those working in these disciplines.

Golden-cheeked Warbler (Setophaga chrysoparia), TCWC 24878, Travis County, Texas.

The exhibit, opening September 19th at the SEAD Gallery in downtown Bryan lives at the intersection of art and science. It will feature 15 photographic prints of specimens from the collections grouped into three themes: research foci, feather adaptations, and beak diversity. In addition to the photography, the exhibit will include specimens from the collection, data visualizations, and original artwork by local artists. Prints of the photography will be available for sale to support the mission of the Collection of Birds.


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