Spooky Science: Bones and Fishes
Halloween with the Bell
Get your scare on with the Bell Museum! We’ve got a variety of both in-museum and virtual activities for you to explore this Halloween! Visit the Touch & See Lab for an up close look at fish specimen under the microscope. Then head over to the Hive for Skeleton Sketching to create your own “x-ray” image. Don’t forget to check out the spooky specimen in the Touch & See discovery wall and test your observation skills on the Bell Museum Spooky Quest!
Don’t want the spooky vibes to end? Check out our virtual offerings below to continue Spooky Science anytime, anywhere!
Ready for your closeup?
Visit the Bell in your best costume, snap a picture at the spooky photo wall, and enter for a chance to win a prize! Share with us by sending your photo to email@example.com. We will randomly select winners from submissions. We can’t wait to see what you share!
Ghost of Cassiopeia
Minnesota Spooky Skies
Zombies (satellites) and ghosts (nebulae) and demons (stars), oh my! Join us for this planetarium show to learn what spooky specters are hiding in our night sky at 1:30pm each day and all day October 30-31.
Journey through the Bell!
Bell Museum Spooky Quest
Join the Bell Museum Spooky Quest during your visit! Journey through the museum on a mysterious mission requiring your best observation skills. Complete each task for a chance to win a prize!
Take a closer look!
Demos & Activities at the Museum
Join us for in-museum demos and activities. Check out up close views of shark skin and explore a selection of animal and insect x-rays. You will also have the opportunity to try your hand at creating your very own skeleton sketch!
VIDEO: Video: Gyotaku Printing
Learn how to create your own fish print using the Gyotaku method! This form of printing was originally used by fishermen to document the catch of the day but has since become an art form of its own.
VIDEO: Video: Skeleton Sketching
In this video, learn how to create your own x-ray drawing! Then, head to our new exhibition X-Ray Vision: Fish Inside Out to see x-rays revealing the exquisite—and sometimes spooky—skeletal structure of fish.
The Weird & The Wonderful
You can see many unique items in a display wall in the Touch & See Lab beginning October 20. Here are some highlighted specimens!
Fool’s gold: A recent gift to the Bell Museum, this 25 pound piece of iron pyrite, FeS2, shows just a small portion of the wide range of crystal shapes in which pyrite grows.
Black bear with bad teeth: This poor old black bear had lived so long that its teeth wore down to the gumline. Its back molars have some of the worst cavities we have seen in an animal skull.
Naturally mummified pigeon: The bird was found in an air vent of a building that was being demolished, and we theorize that it became desiccated from its resting place in an air vent. Insects likely ate its internal organs and anything edible, including all parts of the feathers except the spines.
Wild turkey tail: During breeding season the male wild turkeys puff up their feathers, fan their magnificent tail, gobble, and strut to impress the local females. The different varieties of wild turkey have very different tail coloration, and the buff-colored tips on the feathers suggest that this is a Merriam’s turkey.
Domesticated turkey skeleton: Giving a hint to its dinosaur ancestors, this large turkey skeleton has been part of the Touch & See Lab for decades. A gift from the Minnesota Turkey Growers association, this bird was once a state champion.
Three-bodied pig: More than 100 years old, this unusual fetal pig taxidermy shows a rare case of the incomplete splitting of an egg during development. In less severe forms, this process can lead to conjoined twins in many animals, including humans. The severity of this deformity means that this pig did not survive long after birth.
Flamboyant box of beetles: This tray of beetles represents a collection that was donated to the Bell for education purposes. It include a spectacular harlequin beetle (Acrocinus longimanus) at the center and several different types of iridescent green beetles including scarabs and wood boring beetles.