We had an extra special visitor this week at the Booth. As a designated collection, the Booth Museum holds an internationally important natural science collection that is regularly used in scientific research. We were recently contacted by Canterbury Christ Church University who, in partnership with the Sussex Peregrine Study, were looking for Peregrine falcon specimens to sample for DNA analysis. The purpose was to see if they can determine if our current wild populations are descended from native British individuals remaining after their populations were decimated first by human persecution, as then from the use of pesticides, or the result of migration across the channel from European populations.
As per our appointment, Dr Nicholls and Mr Franklin arrived bright and early Monday morning to set about taking samples from our collection of Sussex peregrines. This sampling involved taking a small piece of one of each birds foot pads which DNA could later be extracted from back at the lab.
Fascinating in itself, and both human visitors are thoroughly nice chaps, however they were overshadowed by the third member of their party. On her way to a new breeding programme was the lovely lady pictured below:
For research and enquires of any sort, please contact us.
Lee Ismail, Curator of Natural Sciences