Chapter 21: Preservation of Specimens
See the Shika Express Biology manual for information regarding collection and preservation of particular specimens covered in the O-level syllabus.
21.1 Dead Specimens
- Mosses and lichens: Wrap in paper or keep in a closed container.
- Plants and parts thereof: hang in the sun until dry. Alternatively, press the plants using absorbent material and a stack of books.
- Insects: Leave exposed to air but out of reach by other insects until bacteria eat everything except the exoskeleton. If you want to preserve the soft tissue, store under methylated spirits.
- Fish, worms, amphibians, and reptiles: Store in methylated spirits (will makes specimens brittle) or a 10% formaldehyde solution (more poisonous and more expensive).
- Parts of mammals (e.g. pig eyes, bovine reproductive organs): store in 10% formaldehyde solution.
Skin the animal and remove as much meat as possible. Bury the bones for several months. Exhume and assemble with wire and superglue.
21.3 Living Specimens
Be creative! Figure out what the animal will eat, who will feed it, what it will drink, where it can hide, how it can be observed, etc.