New & Noteworthy

Archive for May, 2014

23 May 2014

Funding Available for NAGPRA Repatriation

Grants for repatriation of Native American human remains are available from the Department of the Interior. Recently a report was posted to the National Native American Grave Protection and Repatriation Act website ( indicating Native American human remains listed on culturally affiliated inventories and not in notices. Those individuals are immediately available to be in notices.  Also, there are published notices of individuals who have not been requested.  The tribes and Native Hawaiian organizations listed in a notice are eligible to request repatriation. The costs of transfer can be funded by a NAGPRA grant. If interested please

22 May 2014

Registration Now Open for Biological Sciences Congressional District Visits

The NSC Alliance is pleased to announce that it is joining with the American Institute of Biological Sciences to sponsor the 6th Annual Biological Sciences Congressional District Visits event.

This national initiative is an opportunity for biologists across the country to meet with their federal or state elected officials to showcase the people, facilities, and equipment that are required to support and conduct scientific research.

The 6th Annual Biological Sciences Congressional District Visits event enables scientists, graduate students, representatives of research facilities, and people affiliated with scientific collections to meet with their elected officials without traveling to Washington, DC.  Participants may either invite an elected official to visit their research facility or can meet at the policymaker’s local office.

Participants will be prepared for their meeting with a lawmaker through an interactive training webinar.  Individuals participating in this event will receive training on how to improve their communication skills and tips for conducting a successful meeting with an elected official.  Information will also be presented about federal funding for biological research.

Participation is free for NSC Alliance members, but registration will close on July 13, 2014.  For more information and to register, visit

12 May 2014

Solicitation of Proposals for Collections in Support of Biological Research

The National Science Foundation has announced that the Collections in Support of Biological Research program is back to an annual funding cycle.  A new call for proposals (NSF 14-564) was recently released with a deadline of 11 August 2014.

The Collections in Support of Biological Research Program provides funds: 1) for improvements to secure, improve, and organize collections that are significant to the NSF BIO-funded research community; 2) to secure collections-related data for sustained, accurate, and efficient accessibility of the collection to the biological research community; and 3) to transfer collection ownership responsibilities.

View the solicitation at

05 May 2014

Calculating the Costs of Curating Specimens

Many publications have extolled the value of natural history collections, however few have calculated the cost of caring for scientific specimens.  A recent paper estimates the cost of incorporating specimens into a natural history collection and making them accessible to researchers and the public.

On average, it cost $17.51 per specimen for curation, installation, documentation, and databasing.  Long-term care is estimated to cost $0.25 per year per specimen.

“Door to Drawer: Costs of Curation, Installation, Documentation, Databasing, and Long-Term Care of Mammal Voucher Specimens in Natural History Collections” was authored by a team of researchers at the Natural Science Research Laboratory at the Museum of Texas Tech University.

The paper can be downloaded for free at