Harnessing the Chi of a Tiger with Photographer Steve Winter

To see more of Steve’s work, follow @stevewinterphoto on Instagram.

“If you want the chi of a tiger, go on safari in tiger country and look one in the eyes,” says 60-year-old National Geographic wildlife photographer Steve Winter (@stevewinterphoto). “Tigers are the No. 1 animal in the world, and they have been in dire straits for years because of habitat loss and poaching for medicinal trade.” Working to save these big cats is a no-brainer, but according to Steve, it won’t happen without assistance. “The hardest part of my job is making a connection that people deem real to their urban lives. Social media helps because it brings people together that believe in the same thing,” he says. “If you love these animals, get involved and move this conversation forward.” #TigerDay 🐯

It’s International Tiger Day! Have a good day, all you tigers. We want you to stick around longer so we’ll do our best to clean up our act.

Your buds at Blue Aster have whipped up a few more graphics for this tiger day, which I’ll share here later.


I’m taken with the unique gold stamping on the spine of this Scottish binding, and I am very glad the conservator who rebacked the book thought to preserve the original spine decoration and even tried to find a similar stamp for the loss at the head of the spine. 

We love conservators! They make what we do possible.


Dalhusius, Joannes Hermannus. De Regum Regnorumque Mutationibus Ac Revolutionibus Oratio Theologico-politico-historica : Pro Gloria … D. Wilhelmi, Magnæ Britanniæ Franciæ Ac Hiberniæ Regis, Fidei Defensoris &c. Edinburgi: Typis Hæredis Andreæ Anderson, 1691.


Many objects within the Brooklyn Museum collection were found on excavations including this beautiful Ancient Egyptian cartonnage dating to the 1st century B.C.E. The object arrived in the conservation lab for treatment for an upcoming exhibition in our Ancient Egyptian galleries. After close visual examination, something unusual was discovered in one area of the red pigment: a perfectly printed letter ‘m’ under some white fibers stuck to the top of the pigment.  As this was clearly not original to the object, the fibers and printed ‘m’ offer evidence of what happened to this object after it was excavated.  

The red pigment, unlike the other colors, is shiny and unstable suggesting it was previously treated with an adhesive that is causing further damage.  The attached fibers and printed ‘m’ would only transfer to the surface of the red pigment if it were wet or sticky suggesting the source of the letter ‘m’ was placed on top of the object while the adhesive was still wet. 

Close visual examination as well as knowledge of the materials in which objects were packed on excavation suggested the fibers were from paper. After consultation with the paper conservators, the white fibers were tested for lignin, an organic polymer that helps form the structure of cell walls in wood and barks. This polymer reduces the strength of paper and is removed from high quality papers, but only minimally from low value paper items such as newspaper. The fibers tested positive indicating the object was likely consolidated with an adhesive and packed to be shipped from Egypt in contact with newsprint while the consolidant was still wet thereby allowing the transfer of the black printed ‘m’ and white fibers to the approximately 2,000 year old red pigment.

As the museum has no record of any previous restoration, the white fibers and letter ‘m’ are some of the only remaining evidence we have of this object’s more recent history. The object has been treated and will be on display in the fall.

Posted by Kate Fugett

This was a book that was damaged by a dog, and “fixed” with packing tape by a patron.

And this is also why the staff at the library will often stress that patrons should not attempt their own repairs of library books. The “repair” often does more damage than helps, and won’t actually save you from being fined for a repair or replacement fee. This was so heavily damaged that we ended up withdrawing it, and probably just bought a new copy. But now it has a second life in my office as a great example of “what not to do”!

BIG NEWS: The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) just released its land use plan for Alaska’s vast & wild Eastern Interior. While the plan is still be analyzed, we commend BLM for listening to the region’s Alaska Native communities and making apparent plan improvements that sustain traditional land uses.  Please check back in the coming weeks for ways you can help ensure #BLMWild areas are protected from mining in the final “Record of Decision!”

More info: www.blm.gov/ak/eirmp

Photo: Bob Wick, BLM

It’s seems to me
That through apathy
The world sits in shambles
We have people to feed
And important equally
We ought not wager nature in a gamble

Seas will rise
Wind will sting
Dust will eat at everything
The gods will scream
The people will die
Leaders won’t say soothesongs, but warcries

Hunger drives the people mad
Thirst kills them off
Along with other trivial things; the flu; an infection; a cough

Each day that we still depend
On coal, on gas, a planet run on oil
The more we ensure that all of this becomes our future world.


There’s a new “horror” movie coming out, and the premise is that a female diver gets stuck sitting on a rock 200 yards from shore in what looks like maaaaaybe 30 foot deep water, with a great white “circling” nearby.

It is very stupid looking.

I could make all kinds of arguments about how there are only a few documented cases ever of sharks intentionally going after humans, about how we’re already trying to hunt them to extinction because people are terrified of them for no logical reason, about how the creator of Jaws regretted the shark phobia his work inspired for the rest of his life and became an extremely staunch defender of sharks as important ocean wildlife. I could say how pissed I am that yet again someone is making a “horror” movie whose premise is animals are evil and malicious and go after humans for no reason, nature and man are inherently at odds.

But instead I’m going to leave these pictures here and make the case that this is going to be a very inconsistent, confused film about a big angry fish who apparently changes size off camera.

Here we see the shark doing a Sea World style backflip in order to eat a guy right off his surfboard. (It then chases down guy number two, gets his legs in its mouth, and then… swims backwards? to dramatically pull him away from the rock?)

Aaand here we have a perfectly circular bite in the main character’s leg where the shark apparently shrunk way down, bit in deeply enough to leave a perfect circle of ouch in her flesh, and then let go. Either that, or she’s a giantess and her thigh is as big as a man’s entire torso.

Sharks, even great white sharks, really don’t give a fuck about humans. We are not food for them. They attack divers because they have relatively poor eyesight, and from below, a human paddling out into the water on a surfboard looks like a very fat, slow, awkward seal floundering on the surface. Sharks who do attack humans generally attack only once before realizing that this is not what they expected. That’s why there are shark attack survivors; the shark doesn’t try to eat the rest of the person they just bit. Great white sharks and tiger sharks can be dangerous, but so can any large animal. More Americans alone are killed by chairs, cows, deer, dogs, and vending machines (each, not added together) than are killed worldwide by sharks even on a very unlucky year.

Please be kind to sharks.

Scientists need your help looking at photos of adorable penguins. Seriously
"We can't do this work on our own."
By Fiona MacDonald

Guys, this is not a drill. Antarctic scientists need you to study photos of penguins to help them figure out how climate change is affecting these stumpy little flightless birds.

Scientists from the UK have installed a series of 75 cameras near penguin territories in Antarctica and its surrounding islands to figure out what’s happening with local populations. But with each of those cameras taking hourly photos, they simply can’t get through all the adorable images without your help.

“We can’t do this work on our own,” lead researcher Tom Hart from the University of Oxford told the BBC, “and every penguin that people click on and count on the website - that’s all information that tells us what’s happening at each nest, and what’s happening over time.”

The citizen science project is pretty simple - known as PenguinWatch 2.0, all you need to do is log on, look at photos, and identify adult penguins, chicks, and eggs in each image. Each photo requires just a few clicks to identify, and you can chat about your results in the website’s ‘Discuss’ page with other volunteers.

Continue Reading.


In his travels Marco Polo vividly described the cold province of Badakhshan, a prosperous land where horses that descended from Alexander’s horse Bucephalus were once bred and where priceless rubies and the finest lapis lazuli were found.

Since ancient times lapis lazuli has been sourced in this remote region, north-east of modern Afghanistan, and exported over vast distances. Its mines on the steep Hindu Kush Mountains, above the Valley of the Kokcha River, can only be reached through a tortuous and dangerous route. 

Lapis lazuli consists of a large number of minerals, including the blue mineral lazurite, the white mineral calcite and golden specks of iron pyrites.

A laborious process transforms this composite mineral into the pigment ultramarine; various grades of ultramarine can be obtained, from the purest extremely expensive deep blue, composed mostly of lazurite particles to the pale grey so-called ultramarine ash.

Our conservators recently attended a 2-day workshop learning how to make their own ultramarine pigment for use in our own conservation. See the entire process in our Case Study!

You can charge your phone with a plant. The Bioo Lite planter harnesses the energy plants create during photosynthesis to charge just about any device, day or night. Source Source 2

The Indiegogo campaign tripled its goal. Ships in September.

They hope to use the initial run of planters to troubleshoot for bigger, public projects.

Extremely rare ‘Species X’ rediscovered in Brazil after 75 year disappearance!

The blue eyes of an extremely rare bird hadn’t been seen for nearly a century. In one of the most extraordinary stories in Brazilian conservation, a group of researchers have announced the comeback of the Blue-eyed Ground-dove. Last documented in 1941, it was believed extinct. But now the species has been found at top-secret locations in the Brazilian state of Minas Gerais. However researchers can only confirm sightings of 12 individuals, so securing its habitat will be the key to conserving this elusive bird.

Read the full story here: http://bit.ly/1VfHO3d