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New Rat Species Described

New Rat Species Described; Paratype identified in Sternberg Mammal Collection

A new paper published in the Journal of Mammalogy describes a new species of big-eared climbing rat from Chiapas, Mexico. The new species, Ototylomys chiapensis Porter et al. 2017, the La Pera big-eared climbing rat, is characterized by a host of unique morphological and molecular characters. Based on these data, the specimens collected from 11 kilometers northwest of Berriozabál at Pazo de Petrόleo were identified as unique and different from the previously described Ototylomys phyllotis. The Sternberg specimen (FHSM 9092), which includes both skin and skull, was included in the species description (paratype) and currently is the only known individual collected outside of the type locality described above. This specimen, originally identified as O. phyllotis, was collected in 1970, 26 kilometers north of Ocozocoautla. It is suggested that this species could be critically endangered due to only two known localities and the reduction in the extent and quality of the habitat at or near these locations. The authors located this specimen in the Sternberg mammalogy collection by searching VertNet, a global database with which Sternberg shares its data in order to make the data more accessable and maximize the use of our invaluable collections. This is just one case of the value of scientific collections in our museum, as well as those around the world.




Porter, C.A., N.E. Beasley, N. Ordόñez-Garza, L.L. Lindsey, D.S. Rogers, N. Lewis-Rogers, J.W. Sites, Jr., and R.D Bradley. 2017. A new species of big-eared climbing rat, genus Ototylomys (Cricetidae: Tylomyinae), from Chiapas, Mexico. Journal of Mammalogy 98 (5), pp. 1310-1329.


Curtis J. Schmidt

Zoological Collections Manager


Photograph of the paratype of the La Pera big-eared climbing rat (Ototylomys chiapensis Porter et al. 2017) housed in the Sternberg mammal collection.

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KAS – 2017

  April 7-8 2017


Welcome to the 2017 KAS meeting at Fort Hays State University! We are proud to host the meeting this year and are excited to see you there!

Opening Dinner

This year the opening dinner will be held at Fort Hays State University’s Sternberg Museum of Natural History. The dinner will be Friday evening at 7:00pm.!

The museum is located at 3000 Sternberg Dr. in Hays.

Get Directions


Keynote Speakers – TBA

The meetings will be on the FHSU campus at Tomanek Hall.

Get Directions


Let us know what you would like to present! Please submit your abstract using the button below .



To register for the meeting and join us this year, just click on the button below and fill out the form.

Field Trips

We will be offering field trips throughout the afternoon on Friday. Choose your own adventure!  All of the field trips will end before the opening dinner.

4-6pm Collections tours of the Sternberg Museum of Natural History

  • 4-5pm will be a zoology collections tour with Curtis Schmidt – Zoology Collections Manager
  • 5-6pm will be a tour of the paleontology collections with Dr. Laura Wilson – Curator of Paleontology and Assistant Professor of Geosciences.

2:30-4pm Bird watching at Cheyenne Bottoms

  • With Curtis Wolf – Manager of Kansas Wetlands Education Center.

3-5pm Water issues in Hays, Kansas

  • With Dr. Kenneth Neuhauser – Professor of Geosciences

11am-5pm Paleontology field trip to the historic Fish-Within-a-Fish site,

  • With Mike Everhart, Adjunct Curator of Paleontology at the Sternberg Museum.
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Darwin Day at the Sternberg Museum

FREE DAY at the Sternberg Museum! This Sunday February 12 from 1-5pm!

Join us at the Sternberg Museum for 5 family friendly topics: Natural Selection, Mutation, Migration, Sexual Selection, and Evolution. We will have examples and information at stations and presentations set up as well as games and activities!

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FREE Day! Darwin Day

FREE DAY at the Sternberg Museum! This Sunday February 12 for 1-5pm!

Join us at the Sternberg Museum for 5 different topics: Natural Selection, Mutation, Migration, Sexual Selection, and Evolution. We will have examples and information at stations and presentations set up as well as games and activities!

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Bee-lieve It Or Not!

Bee-lieve It or Not!

The Secret Lives of Honey Bees

January 28 – April 2, 2017

Exhibit highlights:

    • Learn what makes a honey bee a honey bee
    • Discover why pollination is important
    • Read about threats to honey bees
    • Play a video game and learn who is a pollinator
    • Uncover the differences between bees and wasps
    • Learn about honey and beeswax

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Beginning Beekeeping Classes

Print and fill out the registration form and bring it in to the museum or call today to pre-register! Registration will reserve your spot and classes are filling up fast so HURRY UP!

February 18 – 19 and 25 – 26, 2017
2:00 – 4:00 p.m.
$10.00 registration fee, $5.00 for Sternberg Museum Members

Course will be taught in two part intervals, parts 1 on Saturdays and part 2 on Sundays. You do not need to take each part in order – (example, if you can make Sunday Feb. 19, but not Saturday Feb. 18, you can participate in part 1 the following weekend).  The course will be held at the Sternberg Museum in the Engel Education Classroom on the 3rd floor.

The course is basic in nature, with a reasonable amount of details to get you a good understanding of getting started with keeping bees in central/western Kansas. 

We will discuss:

  1. Beekeeping tools and equipment
    2. Hive components
    3.  Locating your hives
    4.  Installing bees and inspecting their progress
    5.  Basic pest management
    6.  Progressing with the hive from late winter/early spring through fall
    7.  Hobby and business opportunities
    8.  Membership in State and local bee associations

We will not discuss:

  1. Top Bar Hive management
    2. Warre Hive management
    3.  Honey Flow Hive
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Summer Science Camps Survey

Please take just a few minutes to tell us what you think about the science camps we are currently offering as well as what camps you would like to see in the future! We want to make sure the best camps are offered based on your opinions and the wants of you  and/or your kids!

How interested are you or your child/student in our Sternberg Museum Summer Science Camps?

How interested would you be in a 3-4 day Paleontology or Biology Camp, in the state of Kansas, if we were to offer it?

In a 1 week Paleontology or Biology Camp in the state of Kansas?

In a 2 week Paleontology or Biology Camp in the state of Kansas?

In a 2 week Paleontology or Biology Camp outside of the state of Kansas?

In a 2 week International High School Biology Camp? (Outside of the U.S.)

How interested are you in applying for financial aid for any of the above camps if it is available? (This could be for partial or complete coverage of the associated costs)

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Museum Game Night, February 24th 6-9pm

On Friday, February 24th, join us at the Museum from 6-9pm for our first Game Night!

We will have a variety of kid and family-friendly nature and science-oriented games up in the Museum for everyone to enjoy! We’ll have board games, contests, puzzles, and much more to get kids excited about fun with natural history.

Cost is $10 for Museum members, and $13 for non-members.

To join us, print and fill out the registration form below. You can also pick up a copy at the Museum front desk.



BySternberg Museum

Museum Member Newsletter

Hello there! For reasons we are still looking into, the link we sent out yesterday to the December members newsletter is redirecting to this page (what was our November 2016 newsletter).

Here is a link to the December 2016 members newsletter that definitely works. We hope you enjoy it, and we apologize for the inconvenience.

BySternberg Museum

Haunted Museum and Spooktacular are back!

The Sternberg Museum is hosting spooks, scares, and costumed fun for the whole family this month with our Haunted Museum and Spooktacular events!





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