The Curious Case of the Jellyfish Curator

I’m just back from the Netherlands, where bikes rule the road but canals force all the roads to meander and curve so you are never quite sure where you’re headed. I was lucky enough to have the chance to give a talk about jellyfish at the Naturalis Biodiversity Center, one of the oldest natural history museums in Europe and home to a collection an astonishing 42 million strong. Unfortunately for me, but fortunately for all the items stored in the collection and the amazing people who work on them, all the collections are closed until 2018 for a big remodel. But I was able to hunt in the electronic archives and found out that the holotype (the specimen that defines a species) of the nomadic jellyfish (Rhopilema nomadica) that I swam through in Israel is deposited there. I also had a chance to tour the Naturalis’ extensive botanical collection–about three-quarters of a million […]

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