In a way, this manual is two manuals bound together. The first part is the step-by-step instructions on preparing and articulating a large bird skeleton with a section on a very large - i.e. an emu. The skeleton used for illustration is mostly an eagle skeleton but the techniques are the same for anything the size of (or larger than) a chicken or a raven – a good classroom project. The second part of the manual is a detailed guide to the bones of a bird with enough labeling and detail to be able to sort a pile of bird bones into the skeletal elements, including which side of the bird each bone came from. This is very helpful information for zooarchaeology students who are working with bird bones.
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.