B1 Intermediate UK 15921 Folder Collection
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My name's Jon Ablett, I'm a curator here at the Natural History Museum
and my speciality is molluscs.
Molluscs, that's quite a diverse group of animals.
It includes things like slugs and snails, squid and octopus,
bivalves, clams, mussels and oysters.
All these groups of animals, although they're quite different,
are called molluscs.
When the building was built in 1881, the whole idea of it
was the building was gonna be a cathedral to nature,
and I think you can really get a sense of that as you look around here.
It's very churchlike.
You have about 78 million specimens in the NHM,
from animals, plants, insects, rocks, minerals, fossils
and everything in between.
One of my favourite things is the building itself.
It's all the beautiful carvings that are on the walls and on the ceiling.
There's a lovely little fact that on the left-hand side of the building
all the carvings of the animals and plants are of living animals,
and on the right-hand side of the building they're all extinct animals.
This is one of my favourite parts of the museum.
I walk past it on my way into work every day.
I'm not an expert in fossils or dinosaurs.
I just really love them. One of the really iconic
specimens here
that everyone remembers when they come for a day out is our blue whale.
I love the fact that you get to see the skeleton as well,
not just the model but they've got the bones above.
And you can see it's a mammal,
you can see that it's got a mammalian-type bone structure,
something you completely miss when you see the rest of the body.
Behind the scenes we actually have lots of specimens
collected by Charles Darwin on his 1831 Beagle voyage.
You can see lots of them have yellow paint on them,
which actually signifies these were the first specimens
of this species that were ever discovered.
I think my favourite specimen that was donated
was from some fishermen in 2004 who caught a giant squid off the coast of the Falkland Islands.
They donated it to the museum here on condition we put it on display.
The museum's based in South Kensington.
It's quite a rich area. There's lots to do round here.
We've got the V&A, we've got the Science Museum,
we've got the Royal Albert Hall
and, of course, we've got Hyde Park behind us.
Just like the Natural History Museum,
where every time you come and visit you see something new,
I think that's the same with London.
Every time you visit, every time you walk around,
you see something you'd never noticed before.
You see new places, you get new experiences
and it really is an amazing place.
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The London Story - Natural History Museum

15921 Folder Collection
Una Li published on August 3, 2016    Una Li translated    Mandy Lin reviewed
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