Aaron, Suzanne and Bob with their re-mounted ostrich
For the last 19 months my husband Bob has been working behind the scenes at the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, remounting 1100 birds in the collection, some collected as long ago as the late 1800s. Some, like the Carolina parakeet, are now extinct. The original storage was not well organized and some birds were damaged in the current shelving. New storage is being built so new mountings for hundreds of birds were needed. This ostrich was the most difficult and time-consuming of all.
Sometimes it takes more than one attempt to mount a bird whose center of gravity was not quite plumb when the taxidermist prepared it as in the bird above. This one kept falling over until Bob added the collar and the carved-in foam support in the rear and now it is ready for archival storage in the new climate-controlled facility to be built as soon as funds allow.
The museum has more than 1500 volunteers who work in various capacities, many in places never seen by the general public.