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Recent Acquisitions at the British Museum (Natural History)

    Naturevolume 135pages920921 (1935) | Download Citation



    OF all the regions of the world, the Pacific coast of South America is, perhaps, the most poorly represented in the Museum collection of fishes, and a representative series of the marine fishes of Chile has long been required. Through the kindness of Mr. V. Cavendish-Bentinck, of the British Embassy at Santiago, arrangements have been made with the Chilean fisheries authorities to supply the Department of Zoology with well-preserved specimens of the more important fishes. The first consignment of what promises to be a collection of considerable importance has now been received, and another consisting of specimens collected in the Juan Fernandez Islands is expected within a few weeks. Among the specimens acquired by exchange for the Zoological Department are examples of the Hawaiian land snail Achatinella. The species and races of these snails, which are often restricted to single ridges and ravines (in some cases even to single trees), are classical examples of the effects of isolation in species-formation. The Department of Mineralogy has acquired by purchase a remarkable set of 98 meteoric stones which fell in 1869 as a shower at Tenham station, Kyabra County, South-West Queensland, and are as yet undescribed. Another purchase is a fine doubly-terminated crystal of ruby and a faceted colourless chrysoberyl (7-15 carats) from the ruby mines at Mogok, Upper Burma. Chrysoberyl is usually of pronounced colours, the variety alexandrite, for example, being green by daylight and red by lamp-light, and a colourless gem of this species has not previously been recorded.

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