University of St Andrews
 
 

School of Biology News Centre

item 953
[18-03-2012 to 20-05-2012]

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News Item:
Snake vs cyclops

An exhibition commemorating the centenary of the Bell Pettigrew Museum of Natural History will open to the public this weekend at the University of St Andrews’ Gateway Gallery.

From Saturday 17 March all are welcome to come and marvel at the strange, exotic and shocking treasures of natural history stored within the Bell Pettigrew collection – many of which are normally hidden from public view. These include wonders such as a stuffed cyclopic piglet from the 19th century and the plaster cast of rattlesnake from Buffalo Bill's Wild West Show's 1904 tour of Scotland. An American soldier, bison hunter and showman – Buffalo Bill was one of the most colourful characters to come out of the Old West and famous for his touring cowboy exhibitions.

The ‘Still Life: 100 years of the Bell Pettigrew Museum’ exhibition aims to tell the story of the University’s collections from the foundation of the St Andrews Literary and Philosophical Society in 1838, to the present day. Bones, fossils, books, pictures, photographs and diagrams are all part of the narrative.

The Bell Pettigrew Museum's official birthday is 14 September 1911, when the University celebrated its 500th anniversary. Its doors first opened to host the Quincentenary banquet. Today, as the University celebrates its 600th anniversary, the menu from that event will also be on display.

The exhibition also provides an opportunity to view photographic works by Sean Dooley, of Cellardyke, who is currently working on a project based on rare and endangered species.

Boys and girls, ladies and gentlemen: all are free to attend the exhibition which will run from 17 March to 19 May, Monday-Friday: 9am-5pm; Saturday: 12 noon-4pm.

see here for further details
contact: Dr Martin Milner


 

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Upcoming Events
  • CBD Seminar: How did the butterfly get its colours? The genetic control of colour and pattern diversity in Heliconius butterflies
    speaker: Nicola Nadeau (The University of Sheffield)

    building: Dyers Brae
    room: Seminar Room
    see also: additional details
    host/contact: ecg5@st-andrews.ac.uk

    Butterfly wing patterns are a striking example of biological diversity.The neotropical Heliconius butterflies in particular have extensive within and between species diversity in their wing colour patterns. Some of this diversity is due to variation at the gene cortex, which has repeatedly been targeted by natural selection, both to produce mimetic colour pattern resemblances within Heliconius and remarkably to shift camouflage in the peppered moth. I will also talk about ongoing work in my lab to identify genes controlling iridescent structural colour.


    refID: 1849

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  • CBD Seminar: TBA
    speaker: Amanda Bretman (University of Leeds )

    building: Dyers Brae
    room: Seminar Room
    see also: additional details
    host/contact: ecg5@st-andrews.ac.uk

    refID: 1850

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  • SOI seminar: Skilful predictions of the winter North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO)
    speaker: Dr Nick Dunstone (Met Office)

    building: Bute
    room: Lecture theatre D
    see also: additional details
    host/contact: Prof Chris Todd

    The winter North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) is the primary mode of atmospheric variability in the North Atlantic sector. It has a profound impact on surface conditions over the North Atlantic ocean and temperature & precipitation over Europe and North America. The NAO exhibits pronounced interannual variability, particularly in the last decade, with strong positive NAO leading to mild & stormy European winters (e.g. 2011/12, 2013/14) and strong negative NAO winters giving cold & dry winters (e.g. 2009/10, 2010/11). Until recently seasonal forecasting systems have had no significant skill in predicting the winter NAO, leading many to assume that the NAO was largely a chaotic mode of atmospheric variability and inherently unpredictable. Here I will outline our recent work using the Met Office high-resolution climate models to show that the NAO is indeed predictable both one month ahead of winter and that significant skill still remains one year ahead. I will  examine the drivers of predictability on these two timescales and show that the discovery of NAO predictability is at odds with the skill of the model predicting itself. This surprising result indicates that the real-world is in fact far more predictable than we previously thought and it is likely that even the latest high-resolution climate models are unable to realistically represent the physical processes and feedbacks operating in the real world, resulting in too little signal and/or too much noise. Finally, I show how these new skilful NAO predictions are beginning to be used to aid decision making in government and industry.


    refID: 1862

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  • TBC
    speaker: Petra Neveceralova (Charles University, Prague)

    building: BMS
    room:
    see also: additional details
    host/contact: elc6@st-andrews.ac.uk

    refID: 1863

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Events
Biology, BSRC

  • 25-02-2017 at 19-00 - Dance, Social
    St Andrews BioBall 2017 - Dinner and Ceilidh Dance
    BioSoc
    Hotel du Vin, 40 The Scores, St Andrews

    25-02-2017 at 19-00 - Dance, Social
    St Andrews BioBall 2017 - Dinner and Ceilidh Dance

    BioSoc
    Hotel du Vin, 40 The Scores, St Andrews

    Join BioSoc for BIOBALL 2017 - the School of Biology dinner/dance event of the year. This will be a beautiful event at Hotel du Vin on The Scores on Saturday 25 February 2017. Tickets are subsidised by the School of Biology and BioSoc and include a three course meal with complimentary wine followed by a ceilidh dance by one of the best bands in town. You can come for either the dinner and the dance (recommended!), or later on for the dance only.

    <p>Last remaining tickets are being sold online until Friday 10 February at 9am. <a href="https://www.tilt.com/tilts/school-of-biology-bioball-dinner-dance-ticket">Ceilidh (dance ticket only) &pound;11</a>; <a href="https://www.tilt.com/tilts/st-andrews-bioball-ceilidh-dance-ticket-ps11">dinner and dance ticket &pound;38</a>. Please visit the <a href="https://www.facebook.com/events/694647004037200/">Facebook event page</a>&nbsp;for more information.&nbsp;</p>

    further details

    prebooking: Yes
    audience: All staff and students
    contact: University of St Andrews BioSoc




  • 28-02-2017 at 13-00 - Meeting
    The future of the University: what mid-career academics should tell the Principal!
    RSE Young Academy of Scotland Members with the Principal
    TBA upon registration

    28-02-2017 at 13-00 - Meeting
    The future of the University: what mid-career academics should tell the Principal!

    RSE Young Academy of Scotland Members with the Principal
    TBA upon registration

    The St Andrews-based members of the RSE Young Academy of Scotland are hosting a pair of lunch-time meetings to discuss how mid-career academics see the key issues and challenges faced by the University in the coming years. Will you still be here in 10 years? Do you care about the sort of academic environment you will be working in? What do you think are the main challenges facing universities in general, and St Andrews in particular? And how should we respond to them? The Principal will join us for this second meeting to give her perspective on the issues we raised following the meeting on 14 February, and to take part in an open and energetic conversation. All discussions will be under Chatham House rules, i.e. not attributable to specific individuals.

    <p>Lunch will be provided at both events. If you are interested in participating, please RSVP to Tracey Gloster via&nbsp;<a href="mailto:tmg@st-andrews.ac.uk">tmg@st-andrews.ac.uk</a>&nbsp;by 8 February, stating which meeting(s) you would like to attend, and any dietary requirements.</p>

    further details

    prebooking: Yes
    audience: Staff
    contact: Tracey Gloster




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