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Category Archives: Blogs

A-toad hunting we will go

As we enter June, Manitobans spend time outside gardening at home or swimming at the cottage, except for herpetologists (reptile and amphibian scientists) when June is time to look for toads! This is a good month to be listening for Great Plains toads (Anaxyrus cognatus) and plains spadefoot toads (Spea bombifrons) as males gather in wet spots to call and attract mates. These two species are almost unknown to most…

Also posted in Zoology | Comments closed

Strange History

Maxillary denture; porcelain, plastic; M 20th C. Catalogue Number: H9-15-188. © Manitoba Museum Post by Cortney Pachet, Collections Registration Associate (Human History) Our human history collection is full of special objects, highlighting significant points in Manitoba’s past –like Cuthbert Grant’s medicine chest or the replica of the Nonsuch. Yet we also make a point of collecting objects that represent everyday life in Manitoba – cans of soup, well-loved toys and…

Also posted in Collections & Conservation | Comments closed


Fungi grow just about everywhere and yet we are usually ignorant of their presence until they produce mushrooms in our lawns or mold on the food in our fridge. Although they are common components of ecosystems (and, disconcertingly, our fridges!), and essential for nutrient recycling, we actually know very little about them. What are fungi? A long time ago, fungi were considered plants because they don’t move like animals do….

Also posted in Botany | Comments closed

A BIRD IN THE HAND: Museum Collections and Conservation

During this cold March, the new Prairies Gallery is a comfortable place to explore the diversity, adaptations, and life histories of some of Manitoba’s wildlife. For many visitors, especially the young, the exhibits often provide the first close look at the details of insect wings and wolf teeth, the first chance to explore life underground, or to experience the wonder of just how many other animal species are fellow Manitobans….

Also posted in Zoology | Comments closed

The Rogues’ Gallery of the Manitoba Museum

Written by Aro van Dyck, Collections Technician, Natural History My first day at the Manitoba Museum began with a guided behind-the-scenes tour through the research labs, workshops, and collections storage rooms that are not accessible to the public. On a tight schedule, I got to see a little bit of everything, but when the tour was over I knew I needed to see so much more. Through the next week…

Also posted in Collections & Conservation | Comments closed

In Manitoba, the roses aren’t red

It’s almost Valentines Day and the flower that most people associate with that holiday is bright red. Long-stemmed red roses have long been the flower of choice for people wooing their sweethearts. But if you’ve ever gone hiking in a wild Manitoba grassland or forest, you might have noticed that the roses we have here are pink, rarely white, but not red. In fact, there are no bright red wildflowers…

Also posted in Botany | Comments closed

Shedding Light on the Darker History of Nonsuch

View of the stern of the ship and sails illuminated in a dark gallery.

I recently wrote a fun little article with some facts about Nonsuch for the local newspaper, but I thought we should take some time to dive a bit deeper into the darker history of Nonsuch.  Don’t get me wrong, like many Winnipeggers I have a sentimental attachment to this ship, but sometimes we need to take a step back and critically reflect on history.  The history of our beloved Nonsuch…

Also posted in HBC Museum Collection | Tagged , , , | Comments closed

Total Lunar Eclipse – November 7-8, 2022

A simulation of the November 7-8, 2022 lunar eclipse. UTC, or Universal Time, is 6 hours ahead of Manitoba’s Central Standard Time. [Video courtesy NASA Goddard Spaceflight Centre’s Scientific Visualization Studio] This Month’s Total Lunar Eclipse This November, all of Manitoba is treated to a total lunar eclipse. Totally safe to view, this event allows you to feel the motion of the solar system happen in real time. Here’s what happens,…

Also posted in Astronomy, Planetarium, Science Gallery & Planetarium, Space News | Comments closed

A Rich Inheritance

To celebrate Islamic History Month, I thought I would share this recent beautiful donation we have received at the Museum. This Persian carpet was made in the city of Naeen, Iran, likely in the late 1940s or early 1950s. Naeen workshops are known for making intricately designed carpets that feature a light-coloured background, often using blue as a contrasting colour. The carpets are woven and knotted on a cotton thread…

Also posted in History | Comments closed

The Story of Yee Chung Yen

Last year the Rempel-Ong family donated the “Head Tax” Certificate of Yee Chung Yen, a distant relative. The family and Museum staff have been able to piece together some parts of his personal history. Yee Chung Yen (1895-1982), later known as Henry Yee, was born in Longgang, Shenzhen District, China, and immigrated to Canada in 1917. He was forced to pay a $500 “Head Tax” to enter the country, part…

Also posted in History | Comments closed