This manual is a step-by-step guide to preparing and articulating a small cetacean skeleton. It is based on the articulation of a harbour porpoise skeleton but is directly applicable to any whale skeleton less than 10 feet long. The manual includes a full set of illustrations of a harbour porpoise skeleton. This is a project that you too can do if you have access to a porpoise or dolphin skeleton.
Watch a short introduction to Lee Post's work below:
A thirty-year veteran of bone-building, Lee Post's interest in building skeletons started when The Pratt Museum in the Alaskan town of Homer acquired a 17-foot beaked whale that the staff had collected and cleaned. This led to fifteen years of building up the osteology collection at the museum by salvaging, preparing, and often articulating animal skeletons.
In the mid-'90s, came a three-year high school/museum collaborative project in which Post worked with high school students on first articulating a 41-foot Sperm Whale skeleton they had collected and cleaned, then half a dozen other skeletons. Since that project, his focus has been working mostly with schools and students and creating written manuals that can help others who might want to do similar projects.