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The Academy in the News

Check back here regularly for the latest stories about the Academy of Natural Sciences in the news. Our scientists, research, educational programs, special events, and exhibits are frequently highlighted in local, national, and international media.

Learn all about turtles and tortoises from the Academy of Natural Sciences

NBC 10, My Philly Live

June 10

Interview with Karen Verderame with a live turtle promoting or new Totally Turtles Weekend, Ask the Scientists! and Live! From the Academy.


Noticing a lot of dead birds around your neighborhood? Here’s why.

The Philadelphia Inquirer

May 28

Ornithology Curator Jason Weckstein is interviewed about the amount of dead birds on Philly streets.

Shuttered natural history museums fight for survival in COVID-19 “heartbreak”


May 28

President Scott Cooper is quoted in an article about the impact of COVID-19 on natural history museums


Museum experts weigh in on Animal Crossing New Horizons’ Museum


May 22


Botany Curator Rick McCourt and librarian Kelsey Manahan-Phelan weigh in on the way the museum is portrayed in the enormously popular video game Animal Crossing New Horizons.


Philly Live Weekends: Rabbits With the Academy

NBC 10

May 13

Educator Karen Verderame does Facebook Live with our rabbits through partnership with Visit Philadelphia and NBC 10.

What a Philly museum’s behind-the-scenes collections reveal about climate change

Green Philly

May 8

Collection manager Jordan Teisher on the Lewis & Clark specimens and their connection to climate change.


Murder hornet with potentially deadly sting arrives in the U.S.


May 4

Entomology Curator Jon Gelhaus says beekeepers are worried the “murder hornet” will show up in Philly.


Ambler couple recalls participating in the inaugural Earth Day

The Reporter Online

April 22

Watershed policy manager Carol Collier is interviewed about how the first Earth Day inspired her.

Animal experts joined panel discussion to celebrate Earth Day 50th anniversary


April 22

Educator Karen Verderame is interviewed about the Academy’s participation in the Earth Day video with the zoo and aquarium. 


Visit Philadelphia’s Favorite Museums Thanks to Virtual Gallery Tours

Philadelphia Style Magazine

March 30


The Academy’s six Google Arts & Culture exhibits, first created for Google in 2016, are noted.


Winter sets record across the U.S. as 6th warmest

USA Today

March 27


VP Science David Velinsky is quoted in an article about warm winter temperatures across U.S.


Dinos and Drexel keep Academy of Natural Sciences going strong

The Times Herald, Reading Eagle, others

March 11

A visitor’s review of the museum.

Delaware River experts hail environmental wins but warn of new climate threats

NJ Spotlight

March 10

Senior Watershed Advisor Carol Collier participated in a panel and is quoted in a story about climate threats to the Delaware River and the urgent need for plans regarding droughts, floods and sea level rise


Slow-moving sloth, hedgehog & more live animals at the Academy of Natural Sciences


Green Philly Blog


Feb. 27


“The Parkway museum is focusing on climate change in 2020. A new exhibit highlights several species that survived millions of years by adapting.”


Going slow to survive another day at Natural Sciences Museum


Reading Eagle, The Mercury, Trentonian, Daily Local News, Times Herald and other newspapers


Feb. 26

A review of Survival of the Slowest from PA-NJ suburban newspaper chain.


“Fantastic Fungi” documentary narrated by Brie Larson to be screened in Philly


Philly Voice


Feb. 25


The Academy presents this film on fungi with partner Philadelphia Environmental Film Festival.


Amazing wildlife photos to be featured at PA. museum

Penn Live

Feb. 22

The world is a fascinating place, and a series of prize-winning photographs aims to capture just an ounce of how awesome it really is.

One Tank Trip: Survival of the Slowest exhibit


Feb. 21

A segment featuring the exhibit and interviews with staff.

Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibit features 100 stunning photos

Philly Voice

Feb. 20

The Academy will be the first institution on the East Coast to display the best nature photography and photojournalism.

Drexel’s Academy of Natural Sciences to open new $3 million gallery

Philadelphia Business Journal

Feb. 19, 2020

The Academy has created its first new exhibition gallery in a decade our of the historic Library Reading Room.

2 Historic Philadelphia-area cemeteries host citizen’s science walk for birds

KYW Newsradio

Feb. 14

Ornithology Curator Jason Weckstein is interviewed about the Great Backyard Bird Count, a citizen science event.


Lulu the Sloth visits PHL 17

PHL 17

Feb. 14

Flash the tortoise and Lulu, both from the Academy's new exhibit, visit PHL 17.


Survival of the Slowest at the Academy

NBC 10

Feb. 13

Lulu, the 9-month-old sloth is the start of the Academy's newest exhibit. 


The Survival of the Slowest to open


Feb. 13

Lulu the sloth makes her TV debut.


Urban Naturalist: An Unlikely Hero



Feb. 5


Senior Scientist Rich Horwitz discovery regarding invasive crayfish and American eels is informing the local community.


This is where 18 million plants and animals went after they died


Jan. 24


A video tour through five of the Academy’s specimen collections.


Academy of Natural Sciences marks 50 years of Earth Day with new initiative

KYW Newsradio

Jan. 13

CFO Lisa Miller and watershed scientist Stefanie Kroll discuss the Small Actions Spark Big Changes initiative; child visitors also interviewed.


Small Actions Spark Big Changes: Academy of Natural Sciences launches new initiative to inspire care for the environment

The Philadelphia Sunday Sun

Jan. 10

Fifty years after participating in first Earth Day, Academy starts yearlong initiative to help people care for the environment.


What’s happening to birds and bees

Planet Philadelphia

Dec. 20

Ornithology Curator Jason Weckstein and Research Associate Doug Sponsler talk about the decline of the birds and the bees. 


Meet a sloth, hedgehog, and more at the Academy of Natural Sciences’ “Survival of the Slowest”

The Philadelphia Inquirer

Dec. 18

A feature on our upcoming Survival of the Slowest exhibit.


James Bond has a Philadelphia connection that may surprise you

Philly Voice

Dec. 5

James Bond was an Academy ornithologist. Not many people know that.


Drexel University scientists study snakehead fish in area waterways


Nov. 20 Academy Fisheries scientists David Keller and Paul Overbeck, with Drexel BEES students, discuss the invasive snakehead fish on location in FDR Park.

Is an “Insect Armageddon” happening now?

The Central Record


Nov. 18

Entomology Curator Jon Gelhaus discusses the decline of insects in the U.S.

Philly launches new climate change initiative


Oct. 16

Academy is noted as a participant in the Climate Collaborative of Greater Philadelphia to help organizations become more sustainable.


The Academy of Natural Sciences presents “Anthropocene: The Human Epoch”

Broad Street Review

Oct. 3

A review of the Academy’s Oct. 25 showing and panel talk about “Anthropocene: The Human Epoch.”

North American birds in decline

NPR “Radio Times”

Oct. 3

Ornithologist Jason Weckstein discusses the decline of North American bird species.

Extinct sparrows? Blame the rats

The Philadelphia Inquirer


Sept. 23


Ornithologist Nate Rice says the saltmarsh sparrow, in decline in New Jersey, has evolved adaptations.

Beloved Manayunk peregrine falcon dies; questions raised over cause of death




Sept. 18


Ornithology Curator Jason Weckstein is interviewed about a peregrine falcon in Manayunk.

Minds in the Wild


Penn Today


Sept. 18


As part of a MindCORE effort to bring research into the community, University of Pennsylvania researchers spent the summer conducting two studies at the Academy to better understand how children learn.

Beyond the dinosaurs


Philadelphia Citizen


Sept. 12


An article about the “Museums of the 21st Century” program notes Scott Cooper’s arrival has ushered in “a new school of thinking.”

Infestation of spotted lanternflies hits Philly


KYW Newsradio


Sept. 12


Entomologist Isa Betancourt is interviewed about the invasive spotted lanternfly invasion of Center City.

Moth Appreciation




Sept. 10


Entomology Research Associate Steve Mason give advice on trapping moths.

Native eels returning to Pickering Creek

Daily Local News

August 29

Academy participates in partnership for reintroducing American eels to Pickering Creek, Chester County. This story appeared in numerous regional newspapers.

Brazil fires impact Philadelphia and the world, Opinion

The Philadelphia Inquirer


August 28


The Amazon fires in Brazil are affecting the Philly region and the world ecology now, writes Academy science Director Rick McCourt.

Is Pennsylvania weird? 11 reasons why Pa. is the strangest state

Penn Live

August 16

The Academy’s presidential hair collection happily makes the list of 11 reasons why PA is the strangest state. 

Cape May diamonds: the legend (and the facts) about the Jersey Shore gems

Penn Live

Aug 15

Diamonds on the beach? Not so fast, advises geologist Ted Daeschler.

Bug Fest returns to the Academy of Natural Sciences


August 8

Karen Verderame brings live insects to CBS 3 studio to promote Bug Fest.

Bug Fest crawls into the Academy of Natural Sciences


August 7

Insect specialist Karen Verderame brings live insects to NBC 10 studio to promote Bug Fest. 

Terrifying orb-weaver spiders have returned to the Spring Garden El stop


Aug. 6

Entomologist Isa Betancourt delivers the real science behind orb spiders, as commuters say they are popping up at a SEPTA station.

Bug Fest returns to the Academy this weekend

PHL 17

August 6

Three segments about Bug Fest with Karen Verderame live from the Academy.

Ruth Patrick’s stream research broke ground – and a glass ceiling or two

The Chesapeake Bay Journal

July 30

A feature on the contributions of Dr. Ruth Patrick.

Nights at the museums woo millennials

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News

July 30

The Academy and an interview with Public Experience head Mary Bailey lead an article about innovative evening programs the Academy and some key Philly museums are doing to lure millennials.

New Academy of Natural Sciences dinosaur exhibit a globetrotting expedition back in time

The Reporter

July 26

A review of Dinosaurs Around the World, with quotes from Outreach Manager Mick Kaczmarcik and Curator Ted Daeschler.

Amazing organism in focus: Mudsnails can be used as effective water quality indicators


July 27

A group of scientists led by Elizabeth Watson has discovered that eastern mudsnails can be used as an effective water quality indicator.

Catching sight of a rare butterfly in a surprise refuge

NPR and many U.S. affiliate stations

July 23

Entomology Curator Jon Gelhaus and the Entomology Collection are highlighted in a story about the rare regal fritillary butterfly.

Discover the Age of Reptiles at the oldest natural science institution in the Americas


July 8

A look at Dinosaurs Around the World from Philly’s Convention and Visitors Bureau. 

Dinosaurs Around the World roars at Philly museum

NBC 10

July 15

Exhibits Director Jennifer Sontchi brings real Velociraptor skull to NBC 10 studio for live interview about Dinosaurs Around the World.

The amazing spider science of “Spider-Man: Far From Home”

The Philadelphia Inquirer

July 12, 2019

Entomologist Isa Betancourt is interviewed about Spider-Man’s powers versus what real spiders can do.

New dinosaur exhibit opens at Academy of Natural Sciences

PHL 17

July 9

PHL 17 TV personality does three live segments from Dinosaurs Around the World and Drawn to Dinosaurs exhibits with Special Exhibits Educator Alyssa Jarrell.

‘Zombie’ cicadas, under the influence of a fungus, are mating until death

The Philadelphia Inquirer

July 6

Academy insect and plant scientists weigh in on the extraordinariness of nature. The article also appeared in the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

DRBC in funding shortfall from three states and federal government

NJ Spotlight

July 1

Senior Watershed Advisor and former DRBC head Carol Collier says states should fully recognize the value of the commission and fully fund it.

Lower Moyamensing drummer and actor climbs in dinosaur suit for an exhibition opening

South Philly Review

July 1

Marketing database coordinator Steve Gudelunas, also a local drummer and actor, dons mechanical Velociraptor suit for the performance of his life in Dinosaurs Around the World.

Week in Pictures

The Philadelphia Inquirer

June 30

Two Spinosaurus-on-the-flatbed photos make the Inquirer’s list of photos of the week, coming in at #13 and #14.

Animatronic dinosaurs move into new digs at Academy of Natural Sciences


June 28

A look at the science behind the dinosaurs in Dinosaurs Around the World.

Jurassic Parkway: A 45-foot-long dinosaur crosses the Ben Franklin Bridge into Philadelphia

The Philadelphia Inquirer
June 26

Video, photo and editorial coverage of the Spinosaurus being driven on a flatbed truck from N.J. to the Academy and its installation in front of the museum.

Inspired by snails, Penn researchers invent a reversible adhesive strong enough to hold a person

The Philadelphia Inquirer
June 26

Malacology Curator Gary Rosenberg is interviewed about the snail’s amazing ability to adhere to surfaces.

Report: Millions needed for climate adaption in Bucks, Burlington

Burlington County Times

June 23

VP Science David Velinsky is interviewed about the feasibility of seawalls in certain communities.

Photos of an Australian spider eating a possum went viral. In Philly, spiders can also eat more than their weight

The Philadelphia Inquirer

June 20

Entomology Curatorial Assistant Isa Betancourt is interviewed about the capacity of some spiders to eat five times their weight.

New species of rock-eating shipworm identified in freshwater river in the Philippines

Science Codex

June 19

Malacology Curator Gary Rosenberg is among a team that discovered a new species of shipworm; this one eats through rock.

Pa., N.J., Delaware governors pledge to cooperate on Delaware River Basin environment

NPR StateImpact Pennsylvania

May 17

Watershed Management and Policy Senior Advisor Carol Collier is quoted in a story about a pledge made by Pa., N.J., and Delaware governors to cooperate on the environmental issues of the Delaware River Basin.

This ancient sea creature fossilized in tree resin. How’d that happen?

National Geographic

May 13

Curator of invertebrate paleontology Jocelyn Sessa weighs in on the discovery of an ammonite shell in a land-formed fossil.


Cat fight: How to manage Philadelphia’s exploding feral cat population


May 9

Ornithology Curator Jason Weckstein is interviewed about the effect of feral cats on the Philly bird population.

Why Peter A. Browne bizarrely collected hair

How Stuff Works

May 2

The odd idea of collecting human hair, as recounted in Senior Fellow Bob Peck’s book “Specimens of Hair” about the Academy’s famous hair collection.


Volunteerism takes flight: Senior uses time to care for butterflies



Publication of the Corporation for Aging includes a front-page feature on the Academy’s volunteer program, focusing on long-time volunteer Chris Johnson.

Philly Council candidates talk plastic bag bans, zero-emissions public transit at forum


April 25

Coverage of the Academy Town Square featuring City Council At-Large candidates’ stands on environmental issues.

Salvaging and restoring the Notre Dame Cathedral 


April 16

President and CEO Scott Cooper talks about the architecture of the burning icon.

Salvaging and restoring the Notre Dame Cathedral


April 16

President and CEO Scott Cooper talks about the architecture of the burning icon.

Academy of Natural Sciences fills new C-suite position

Philadelphia Business Journal

April 10

Academy makes a key hire in the C-suite, Niki Stewart.

Meet the animals that inspired your favorite superheroes at the Academy of Natural Sciences

PHL 17

April 8

Amy Hoyt and Christine Danowsky bring an owl, armadillo and boa for live in-studio segment promoting Animal Superhero Weekend.

Water now and in the future

Planet Philadelphia

March 15

Podcast with Watershed Management and Policy Senior Advisor Carol Collier, who was a guest on the local radio show talking about how we treat water now will determine our health and the health of the planet.

Good news in the district

The Philadelphia Tribune
March 12 The Academy’s connection to the George Washington Carver Science Fair is noted.

Academy panel: city’s grapple with inevitable climate change

The Triangle
March 8 Coverage of the Academy Town Square on local climate change from Drexel’s student newspaper.

Social Butterfly

Grid Magazine

March 2019

A feature on entomologist Isa Betancourt on her popular weekly live-stream with insects.


Unicorns, mermaids and dragons: The stars of the Academy of Natural Sciences’ latest exhibit

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News,

Feb. 15

A preview feature on Mythic Creatures.

Insect trapped in precious gem is mystery for Bucks County dealer, scientists

The Philadelphia Inquirer,, Daily News

Feb. 5 

Entomology Curator Jon Gelhaus and Invertebrate Paleontology Collection Manager Katy Estes-Smargiassi weigh in on the rare find of an ancient insect trapped in opal. This story also ran in other publications including Pocono Record.

How one South Jersey woman brings monarch butterflies to life 

Philly Voice

Feb. 5

Entomology Curator Jon Gelhaus weighs in on the fate of monarch butterflies.

2018 saw most rain ever for county, rising temperatures

The Intelligencer

Feb. 5

VP for Science David Velinsky talks rainfall records. 

Specimens of Hair

NPR “Science Friday”

Feb. 1

Live interview with Senior Fellow Robert Peck about the Academy’s presidential hair collection.


How to not get frostbite, hypothermia when the weather is freezing, Philadelphia Inquirer

Jan. 30

An article about the weather offers advice about frostbite from paleontologist Ted Daeschler (emailing from New Zealand), who just spent over a month in Antarctica.


Birding Today: John Cassin first true taxonomist

Muskogee Daily Phoenix

Jan. 27

A feature on “our first true taxonomist,” Academy Curator John Cassin. 


The Natural History of Unicorns

Philly Voice
Jan. 24

“Academy connects the dots between real life and mythic creatures.” Announcing our upcoming exhibit.


Here are all the government shutdown deals in Philly, Philadelphia Inquirer, Philadelphia Daily News

Jan. 16

The Academy offer pay-what-you-wish admission to furloughed federal government employees and families. 


The Delaware River’s Invisible Threats


Jan. 15. Senior Watershed Policy Manager Carol Collier is interviewed about Delaware River water quality in a three-part series on the river.

Lots of rain in 2018 made local rivers run high and fast


Jan. 11

Watershed Policy Senior Advisor Carol Collier says the region isn’t prepared for the high flooding we’ve hat.


Shuffling finances isn’t the only challenge for federal workers on furlough

KYW Newsradio

Jan. 10

VP Finance Lisa Miller is interviewed, and so is a visiting family, about the Academy’ special admission offer for federal workers.


The Academy hosts Xtreme Bugs

PHL 17

June 8

Live Invertebrate Specialist Karen Verderame brings live extreme insects to the TV studio and promotes Xtreme Bugs and the importance of the real insects.

Happy Birthday. James Bond


Jan. 4

The real James Bond, Academy ornithologist, led almost as adventurous a life as his fictional namesake, starting with an expedition to the Amazon with the Academy in 1925.

Beginning of the bets? An Eagles-Bears Twitter war starts, involving a T. rex

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News,

Jan. 3

The Academy and Chicago Field Museum of Natural History’s Sue the T. rex wage a twitter war over the Eagles-Bears game.


Philadelphia expert offers insight on studies that raise fear of “insect apocalypse”

KYW Newsradio

Jan. 1, 2019

Entomology Curator Jon Gelhaus is interviewed about threats to insects and the disappearing trend.


The Year in Pictures 2018

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News,

Dec. 31

The gorilla diorama renovation project made the Inquirer’s list of best pictures of 2018!



The Year in Grossness

Atlas Obscura

Dec. 28

The Academy’s collection of human hair, including the presidents’, is listed among the gross stories of the year.



Rolling back clean water protections will hurt our communities—Opinion

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News,

Dec. 24

A commentary jointly signed by Carol Collier, Academy senior advisor for watershed management and policy, plus the William Penn Foundation and Open Space Institute.



Scientist and Justice Perspectives on Our Environment on the Winter Solstice Planet Philadelphia

Dec. 21

Patrick Center Director Roland Wall is a guest on local radio show “Planet Philadelphia” to discuss the impact of climate change on the Philly area. Link is the podcast.



Mane attraction at Philly museum is collection of presidential hair

Fox News and many U.S. affiliate TV stations

Dec. 18

An interview with Senior Fellow Robert Peck about the hair exhibit and his book on the subject.



Plight at the Museums: How Philadelphia cultural institutions are fighting back

The Philadelphia Business Journal

Dec. 13 

CEO Scott Cooper is quoted regarding challenges museums are facing.

When did fish learn to walk? Antarctica may hold the answer 


Nov. 21

Vertebrate Zoologist Ted Daeschler is quoted in an article about how and when ancient fish first crawled from the ocean on to land.



Strands of History

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News/

Nov. 12

An interview with Senior Fellow Robert Peck about his Specimens of Hair book, exhibit and Academy Town Square talk. In the Daily News, the feature was pictured on the cover of the newspaper. 

Science Friction? Mermaids and dragons to join Academy’s dinos

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News,

Nov. 9

“The highly august, if sometimes playful Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University, will mount an exhibit next year featuring mermaids, dragons, griffins, and other fantastical creatures. Is this presenting “fake News”? 

The Strange Allure of Hundreds of Samples of Hair

Atlas Obscura

Nov. 9

A feature on the Browne hair collection, the subject of Senior Fellow Robert Peck’s new book, Specimens of Hair. 

A hairy collection: Locks belonging to Washington, Jefferson and Napoleon on display in new exhibit in Pa. museum

Penn Live

Oct. 31

Academy is putting some of its famous hair albums on display to coincide with a new book and Academy Town Square talk by Senior Fellow Robert Peck. 

Parkway Soiree Celebrates the Benjamin Franklin Parkway’s 100th Anniversary 

PHL 17

Oct. 26

Live interviews with Public Experience Manager Mary Bailey in Dinosaur Hall and with specimen display for Parkway 100 celebration and Dinos After Dark; Judi Rogers, Parkway Museums Council, also interviewed.

Philadelphia Shell Show


Oct 23

Live interview with Collection Manager Paul Callomon in the Malacology Collection in anticipation of the 35th annual Philadelphia Shell Show.

Invasive Spotted Lanternfly Threatening Parts of Pa. Agriculture, Environment

CBS 3 

Sept. 25

Entomologist Greg Cowper describes the spotted lanternfly invasion of Philly and Pa.

What it takes to restore an 80-year-old diorama at the Academy


Sept. 20

Exhibits Director Jennifer Sontchi and Designer Lauren Duguid describe the process or restoring the dioramas and the new signage to come. 



Drexel’s Academy of Natural Sciences to reopen 80-year-old dioramas after restoration


Philadelphia Inquirer,

Sept. 19

A feature highlighting the beauty in the small details of the renovated gorilla and takin dioramas, including the new snails and snail trail. 



Thieves stole 7,000 creepy insects and spiders from a museum. But why?

The Washington Post

Sept. 11

Live invertebrate specialist Karen Verderame says there is a thriving black market for exotic insects.

Philly insect museum heist reveals bugs are hot items on the black market

The Philadelphia Inquirer,

Sept. 5–9

Live Invertebrate Specialist Karen Verderame discusses the black market for exotic insects in light of the extensive theft from the Philadelphia Insectarium. 

Centuries-Old Plant Collection Now Online, A Treasure Trove for Researchers

NPR “Morning Edition” and more than 80 affiliate public radio stations across U.S.

Sept. 2

Botany Associate Curator Rick McCourt is interviewed about the Academy’s role in a multi-institutions project to digitize and make available images and data on preserved plants collected along the East Coast.

Podcast Jason Weintraub

I Hear America Talking


A podcast with entomologist Jason Weintraub about Bug Fest, the Entomology Collection and the Academy. The podcast aired online and on WRDV FM and its affiliates in Greater Philly area.

What fish live in the Schuylkill and which are safe to eat?

The Philadelphia Inquirer

Aug. 30

Senior scientist Richard Horwitz discusses the health of the Schuylkill River and how fish ladders help shad. 

These strands of Lincoln’s locks could sell for thousands of dollars. What’s behind the fascination with presidential hair?

TIME magazine

Aug. 23

Senior Fellow Robert Peck discusses the Academy’ famous presidential hair collection in a story about Lincoln’s locks gong on the auction block.

Among the dead flowers at the Academy of Natural Sciences, a Civil War mystery unfolds

The Philadelphia Inquirer 

Aug. 17

Academy botanist makes a surprising discovery in the Botany Collection: a plant plucked from the Gettysburg battlefield shortly after the battle.

Delaware Valley seeing one of the wettest years in a century

The Intelligencer 

Aug. 15 

Eight years ago, Academy Science VP David Velinsky predicted substantial increases in extreme precipitation events in the Philadelphia region.Aug. 15

Bug Fest Returns to the Academy

NBC 10

Aug. 8

Live interview at NBC studio with insect specialist Karen Verderame about Bug Fest.

Bug Fest is Back at the Academy


Aug. 7

Personality Pat Gallen visits the Academy for a live segment about Bug Fest and the importance of insects with insect specialist Karen Verderame.

Diorama Restoration at the Academy of Natural Sciences Confronts Loss & Conquest

Hidden City

Aug. 6

A spring cleaning of the dioramas 80 years in the making. A story of collection, conquest and colonialism.

BEN Around Philly


BEN FM 95.7


Aug. 4 

Podcast with insect specialist Karen Verderame on Bug Fest and insects role in the environment.


DelVal professor publishes paper on new species of ancient aquatic predator

Bucks Local News

Aug. 2

Academy Research Associate Jason Downs and paleontologist Ted Daeschler describe a new species of Devonian-age fish from the Arctic.

Check out live insects at Bug Fest at the Academy of Natural Sciences

Philly Voice

July 19

A preview of Bug Fest.

How Philly’s arts and cultural institutions are using booze to attract wider and younger audiences

The Philadelphia Inquirer/ News

July 19

Dinos After Dark and Door 19 are featured in a story about the trend of local museums using beer to attract younger audiences. 

Here’s why you might be seeing more fireflies than usual this year in the Delaware Valley

Philly Voice

July 6

Entomologist Jon Gelhaus describes the factors affecting local firefly populations.

Science museum to show off its dino might at night

The Philadelphia Tribune

June 23

A feature on Dinos After Dark, including July 17 with BalletX.

How fish meant for market might end up in a museum

Atlas Obscura

June 12

Feature with lots of images of ichthyologist Mark Sabaj’s quest to add an opah to the collection; includes historical perspective from Senior Fellow Robert Peck.

Get Up Close and Personal With ‘Xtreme Bugs’

Philadelphia Family and Main Line Parent

May 24

More than 20 massive animatronic bugs invade the museum in this new immersive exhibit.

A magnified look at the fascinating world of insects

KYW Newsradio

 May 22

“It’s a bug’s life and we’re just living it;” a look at the new Xtreme Bugs exhibit.

Xtreme Bugs opens Saturday


May 23

Live interview w Exhibits Senior Director Jennifer Sontchi from the exhibit. 

17 Gigantic bugs have crawled into the Academy of Natural Sciences for ‘Xtreme Bugs’ exhibit

The Philadelphia Inquirer/Daily News/

May 22

A preview features on Xtreme Bugs. 

10 Reasons You Should Visit the Academy of Natural Sciences this Month

Mommy Poppins

May 21

Dinosaurs is the first of 10 reasons to visit us.

Bird Nerd podcast


May 15

Ornithology Curator Jason Weckstein is interviewed as the first guest on a new podcast.

With nation’s first city-owned mussel hatchery, Philly employing bivalves in the battle to improve water quality

Plan Philly

May 2

Scientist Roger Thomas is interviewed in a story about the new partnership agreement with the Academy and six others to form the Aquatic Research and Restoration Center.

Malaria-carrying parasites spread more when they can jump into multiple birds

April 30

A new study by ornithologist Jason Weckstein on blood parasites and birds.

Wild in the Streets: Tracking Philly’s Coyote Connection

Hidden City

April 30

A story about a wild coyote running around Philly, include a bit about Thomas Say, one of the Academy’s founders and his connection to the mammals in the 19th century. 

How big cities like Philly are creating entirely new animal species

April 17

Entomologist Isa Betancourt’s insect survey in Logan Square fountain is featured in a story about the Academy Town Square “How the Urban Jungle Drives Evolution.”

Haddon Township Therapy Chicken Rosebud Died


April 16

On the death of Rosebud the therapy chicken, Educator Hollie Barattolo comments on the important role the animal played at the museum’s Access to Autism events. 

William Penn Foundation gives $42M to protect Delaware River, bringing total to $100M

The Philadelphia Inquirer/Daily News/

April 4

Academy receives $3.2 million grant from the William Penn Foundation for its leadership role in the Delaware River Watershed Initiative.

Nerdy nightlife: 9 awesome after-hours events at Philadelphia museums

Penn Live 
April 2
Door 19 gets its due in this roundup of nerdy events at museum nights.

Dinos After Dark and Crocs

Fox 29

March 23

Fox 29 does a live segment about Dinos After Dark  in the Crocs exhibit, with an owl, Russell Byers kids and a table of beer, T. rex tacos and loaded nachos.

Giant chocolates commemorate first dinosaur skeleton ever mounted for display

Billy Penn

March 3

Shane Chocolates delectable offerings based on Academy specimens at Paleopalooza.

Why we need to do more to protect water quality in the Philadelphia region

The Philadelphia Inquirer/ Daily News/

March 9

Op-ed by President Scott Cooper and Philadelphia Horticultural Society President Matt Radar calling for partnerships and other measures to protect our water in face of federal regulation rollbacks.

Cape Town water crisis reminds how Philly has been able to avoid its own drought disaster

Philly Voice

March 1

Rising sea levels not only could put portions of Philadelphia underwater, but they threaten to push the salt line farther upstream, says Carol Collier, senior advisor for watershed policy and management.

Mudsnails provide water quality indicators

Environment Guru

Feb. 28

Academy scientist Elizabeth Watson is lead author on a new study that is the first to show that eastern mudsnails can be used to determine water quality.

Plants found to evolve away from defenses that do not work for them anymore

International Business Times

Feb. 26

Tatyana Livshulz, associate botany curator, is lead author of a study about plant defenses; the findings can help scientists model the process of co-evolution.

Playtime for Grown-ups: Adult nights at your kids’ favorite spots 

Family Focus Media

Feb. 2

Door 19 and Dinos After Dark are among the great places where adults can have fun after hours.

Academy of Natural Sciences renovates its dioramas for the first time since the 1930s

The Philadelphia Inquirer/Daily News/

Feb. 20

A feature on the Academy’s diorama renovation project. Interviews with Exhibits Director Jennifer Sontchi and Senior Fellow Robert Peck.

Crocs: Ancient Predators in a Modern World


Feb. 20

Live segment with Exhibits Director Jennifer Sontchi in Crocs: Ancient Predators in a Modern World.

Long before Trump, we were obsessed with presidential hair


Feb. 19

Senior Fellow Robert Peck is interviewed about the presidential hair collection on the occasion of a N.Y. library finding an envelope of Washington’s hair.

After more than 80 years, dioramas at the Academy of Natural Sciences get a cleaning


Feb. 19

Coverage of the glass being removed from the two dioramas. Interviews with Senior Fellow Robert Peck and Exhibits Director Jennifer Sontchi.

The feverish competition behind the Academy of Natural Sciences’ legacy

The Philadelphia Inquirer/Daily News/

Feb. 15

The Cope and Marsh Bone Wars is recounted in an article about the diorama renovations.  

Learn all about crocodilians at the Academy of Natural Sciences

The Pottstown Mercury

Feb. 14

Get to know the live crocs in Crocs: Ancient Predators in a Modern World.

Fresh look at old animals

The Philadelphia Inquirer

Feb. 12

The Academy’s dioramas are featured in a photo spread in light of the upcoming renovation of two displays.

The wiring for walking developed long before fish left the sea

Science News

Feb. 8

Vertebrate Biology Curator Ted Daeschler comments on a study about  how ancient fish evolved the brain circuitry that led to walking on land.

New exhibit in Philly has a bunch of live crocodiles

Philly Voice

Feb. 6

“You can get within inches of them,” the live crocs in Crocs: Ancient Predators in a Modern World.

Get up close to “Crocs” at the Academy


Feb. 6

A review of the new Crocs exhibit calls it “compelling.”

Academy of Natural Sciences to begin $400,000 renovations of 2 animal scenes

Philadelphia Business Journal

Feb. 1

Two wildlife scenes at the Academy will get their first renovations nearly 90 years after they were unveiled.

Crocs: Academy of Natural Sciences show opens Saturday with live, toothy, misunderstood….

Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News,

Jan. 31

Feature on the new Crocs exhibit.

Nighttime beer garden opening inside Academy of Natural Sciences


Jan. 6

The Academy holds its first Dinos After Dark evening beer and dinosaurs event.

DRBC’s new rule would protect against frack-waste contamination, officials say

NPR PA State Impact

Jan. 2

Watershed Management Senior Advisor Carol Collier comments on the new Delaware River Basin Commission rule regarding fracking waste water.

Barnegat Bay marshes help keep water clean


Dec. 27

VP for Science David Velinsky is interviewed about his Barnegat Bay marshland study.

Academy of Natural Sciences receives multi-million dollar donation

KYW Newsradio/CBS 3

Dec. 22

Relatives of a former Academy explorer will make a multi-million-dollar donation to the institution as part of his legacy.

Tibet explorer's Philly family to donate $3M to Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News,

December 6, 2017

Academy announces generous donation from the Dolan Family for watershed research.

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A few minutes with … Scott Cooper of Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Philadelphia Business Journal

November 22, 2017

Q&A with new Academy President and CEO Scott Cooper.

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Academy of Natural Sciences names Scott Cooper new president

The Philadelphia Inquirer, Daily News,

November 15, 2017

The new leader of the Academy is a museum administrator with a background in construction, architectural conservation and helping the public connect with research and collections.

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New Exhibit Lets Kids Explore World of Baby Dinosaurs

CBS Philly

November 13, 2017

New exhibit “allows the little ones to get familiar with some dinosaurs their size.”

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Find a dead bird? The Academy of Natural Sciences would like to have it

The Philadelphia Inquirer,

November 10, 2017

Ornithology Collection Manager Nate Rice explains why backyard scientists bring the Academy dead birds and why they are useful to science.

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11 places to sleepover in NJ and Philly — from zoos to museums to ships

Cherry Hill Courier-Post

November 8, 2017


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Why are wildfires concentrated in the west?

Philly Voice

November 1, 2017

Q&A with Academy forest fire researcher Stephen Mason.

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Tragic baby opossums story has a happy ending (thank goodness) Harrisburg-Patriot News

October 26, 2017

It begins with tragedy - the death of a pair of mothers. Video of the Academy's new baby opossums.

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Explore the new ‘Tiny Titans: Dinosaur Eggs and Babies’ exhibit at Academy

Main Line Media News

October 25, 2017

The Academy of Natural Sciences re-stakes its claim as Philadelphia’s dinosaur museum with 'Tiny Titans: Dinosaur Eggs and Babies.'

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Baby hedgehogs at the Academy, Patriot-News Online

October 23, 2017

A video of the Academy's darling new baby hedgehogs getting ready for their public debut.

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"Little" dinosaurs? Philly exhibit is a big hit


October 18, 2017

A review of Tiny Titans exhibit: "Seeing real dinosaur eggs from a time too long ago to imagine and handling some replicas are new ways to experience a familiar subject."

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The Myths Behind Winter Weather Forecasting


October 9, 2017

Entomologist Jason Weintraub busts the winter myth about the woolly bear caterpiller.

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Tiny Titans: Dinosaur Eggs & Babies Now Open at the Academy


October 2, 2017

A review of the new Tiny Titans exhibit with a different take on dinosaurs.

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The Academy's new exhibit Tiny Titans

CBS Philly

September 27, 2017

Jennifer Sontchi, senior director of exhibits, gives an early peak at Tiny Titans: Dinosaur Eggs and Babies.

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Meet the woman behind Bugfest at The Academy of Natural Science

PHL 17

September 26, 2017

Insect specialist Karen Verderame introduces a range of live bugs that live at the museum.

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Parkway 100 Special


September 21, 2017

Senior Fellow Robert Peck talks about the Academy's history on the Parkway, and the museum's dinosaurs and dancing dinosaurs are highlighted. 

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Dinosaurs and Prehistoric Fish

WHYY "Radio Times"

September 20, 2017

Paleontologist Ted Daeschler talks about his fossil research in Antarctica. 

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Delaware River Watershed; It's Healthy, But Significant Threats Are Looming

NPR, NJ Spotlight

September 18, 2017

Carol Collier, senior advisor for watershed management and policy, weighs in on the looming threats to water quality in the Delaware. 

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ANTS! Not Gnats: Swarm Of Bugs Create Buzz In Philadelphia

CBS Philly

September 11, 2017

Academy Entomologist Isabelle Betancourt explains the swarming flying ants in the region.

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Trump’s EPA cuts threaten water quality in Delaware River Basin, report says

NPR State Impact Pennsylvania

August 29, 2017

Carol Collier, senior advisor for watershed and policy management, says proposed cuts to EPA funding could lead to decline in Delaware River water quality.

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A Philly scientist thinks an Australian parrot might eat flesh

The Philadelphia Inquirer

August 15, 2017

An Academy chemist, using the ornithology collection, is trying to figure out a puzzle about a species of rainbow lorikeet in Australia.

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Meet the baby skunks of the Academy of Natural Sciences

August 9, 2017

Introducing the Academy's newest live animals to hit the stage: stinkin' cute baby skunks.

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Confront the elephant (beetle) in the room at BugFest

The Philadelphia Inquirer,

August 9, 2017

A behind-the-scenes look at preparations for Bug Fest.

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Bug Fest is back at Academy of Natural Sciences


August 9, 2017

Entomologist Karen Verderame regales CBS' Pat Gallen with some giant live insects.

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Bug Fest will feature Richard's worst fear: Spiders

Fox 29

August 8, 2017

Fox 29 Richard Curtis gets a lesson in loving spiders from Bug Fest entomologist Karen Verderame.

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