Marine Animals




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Squirrel Study Skin
Preserving Fish
Sketching Aquarium
Preserving Insects
Marine Animals

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By Dan Beard

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Starfish must be first placed in fresh water and allowed to remain there for several hours; they may then be removed and spread out upon a board, and held in position by pins or nails driven in the board alongside of the rays, but not into the creature. Put the board in a dry place out of the sun, and the air will absorb all the moisture in the specimens; the latter, they dry, become hard and stiff.

I have several starfish preserved in this simple manner, and although no pickle or artificial preservative was used, they have kept in good condition for several years.

Small crabs may be dried in the same manner. The flesh must be extracted from the big pincers of the larger crabs and lobsters; this may be done by breaking off the points of the pincers and removing the meat with a crooked wire. The points of the claws should be saved and glued in place after the animal is dry. The smaller claws may be allowed to dry; small holes pierced in them will allow the air to enter and facilitate the drying process. The insides of both lobsters and large crabs most be removed from an opening made underneath.

Wash them with cold water and inject carbolic acid and water into their extremities; place them upon a board to dry, with their legs spread out ; after all moisture has evaporated, varnish them and fasten the bodies and legs of the specimens to a board with fine wires.

All soft-bodied animals, such as squids and slugs, can be preserved in spirits. Sea-urchins, such as are found upon our coast, may be dried like starfish, but it is best to remove the insides of the larger specimens.

American Boy's Handy Book






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Last modified: October 15, 2016.