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November 30, 2017

 (Albuquerque, NM) -- A 245 million-year-old fossil horseshoe crab recently discovered in Idaho has been named Vaderlimulus because the animal’s shield head resembles the helmet worn by Darth Vader from the Star Wars film series. Paleontologists from the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science in Albuquerque (Allan J Lerner, Spencer G. Lucas) and the University of Colorado at Denver (Martin Lockley) just published a scientific article describing the extinct fossil horseshoe crab. Their findings were published in the latest issue of the German paleontological journal Neues Jahrbuch für Geologie und Paläontologie, which is the world’s oldest paleontological journal.

Vaderlimulus is the first North American fossil horseshoe crab from rocks of the Triassic Period. The Triassic was the first period of the Mesozoic Era (252 to 201 million years ago). Dinosaurs and mammals were... Read More...

November 30, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) –  It is now easier for amateur explorers to find and identify treasures in our state or where they live, thanks to a new book written by New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science  Educator Michael Sanchez.

The book, entitled “Natural History Collector: Hunt, Discover, Learn!”  is full of expert tips on how to start, catalogue, care for and display your collections. Sections focus on: rocks and minerals; animal and bird tracks; seashells, fossils, insects, and plants.  The book targets elementary through mid-school students.  Each segment of Natural History Collector offers guidance on where to look for objects and what to look for.  Each section includes a specific project like growing your own crystals, collecting rocks and minerals by region, making casts of animal tracks, pinning insects, drying, pressing and mounting plants. 

A Book...

November 26, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) -- The New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science will be filled with musical sounds on the evening of December 8.  Live musicians will perform in the final event associated with the museum’s current exhibition Wild Music: Songs & Sounds of Nature.Two groups will be sending joyous music throughout the museum.  The Young Musicians Initiative (YMI) will perform at 6 p.m. and de Profundis, an acapella men’s group, will sing at 8 p.m. in the atrium.

The Young Musicians Initiative utilizes music to help strengthen communities, schools and families with goals of keeping kids in school and providing incentives to learn.  De Profundis is celebrating their 24th season of sharing “the warm silken sounds of male voices in harmony.” 

The Young Musicians Initiative utilizes music to help...

November 16, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) – Keep your young explorers engaged and active this winter with one of the day-long Young Explorers Winter Camps at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science in Albuquerque.  The camps start December 18th and run through January 2nd.   All camps are for children in grades Kindergarten through 5th. 

“There is something engaging and educational offered in each one of these well-crafted Winter Camp modules,” said the Museum Executive Director Margie Marino. “This year we can offer 10 camps with topics as diverse as Leonardo da Vinci, in anticipation of the upcoming blockbuster Da Vinci—The Genius exhibition coming in February of next year, to astronomical adventures, winter garden habitat, and tracking animals.”

 The Winter Camps run from 9:00AM-4:00PM. There is a day care option also for students until 5:00PM.  Online... Read More...

November 2, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) –The possibility of people flying, like birds, mystified man until he figured out how to do it. Centuries before the American Wright brothers launched their flying machine, acclaimed Italian genius Leonardo da Vinci worked to find a practical solution to the challenge of flight. He studied the flights and physical structure of birds, making detailed drawings of flight and several mechanical wing devices.  He designed many mechanical devices, including parachutes.  About 1485, da Vinci drew detailed plans for a human-powered ornithopter, a wing-flapping device intended to fly.  The image he presented is a powerful one, however there is no evidence da Vinci ever tried to build such a device. 

The journey to reach the stars began with our earliest dreams of flying and led to landing on the moon and sending a probe to Pluto. But that’s only the beginning.  The New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science DynaTheater... Read More...

November 2, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) –  Who will build the amazing future of our human race? That question sparks a giant-screen adventure unlike any other in DREAM BIG: Engineering Our World, an epically fun tour of inspiration through the visionary advances made by yesterday’s, today’s – and most thrillingly of all, tomorrow’s – engineers. This film is the perfect encapsulation of what engineering is all about: ordinary people finding ways to defy the impossible and change the world, and their own lives, in the process.

As part of its ongoing commitment to STEAM education programming (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, Mathematics) the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science is hosting the film Dream Big-Engineering our World, a heartfelt story of human ingenuity, free with museum admission, Saturday November 18th and bringing in a team of STEAM amd engineering to ... Read More...

October 26, 2017

(Santa Fe, NM) -- New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science patrons will be treated a performance by the Young Voices of the Santa Fe Opera when they present Encounters with Opera.  The performance will take place Saturday November, 4 during 2017 National Opera Week, a week-long celebration of opera takes place in cities and town throughout the country.

The Young Voices of Santa Fe Opera is the company’s training program for high school students directed by Kathleen Clawson. They will perform various arias and choruses during two performances at the museum on Saturday morning.

The Young Voices performance is timely with the current traveling, and highly interative exhibition Wild Music: Songs & Sounds of Life. National Opera Week runs from October 27 - November 5, and is coordinated by Opera America The performances take place in spaces where opera is not typically found, engaging with audiences... Read More...

October 14, 2017

(Albuquerque, New Mexico) – With names like Albuquerque, Santa Fe and Taos, and a giant crater the size of the Valles Caldera, future maps of the planet Mars will contain a lot of names familiar to the people of New Mexico. Suggested by a member of the Mars Rover team based in New Mexico, the names are of cities and locales along the legendary El Camino Real de Tierra Adentro and are being used to name features visited by the Mars Exploration Rover Opportunity during an important phase of its mission. 

“As part of mapping Mars’ surface, we name rocks and places investigated by the Opportunity rover to provide a convenient, easily remembered index. This helps in later more easily identifying and reviewing the data we are collecting along the planet’s traverses,” said Larry Crumpler, Ph.D., who has been part of the Mars Rover team for fifteen years, operating from his office inside the New Mexico... Read More...

October 6, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) – Thousands of visitors and New Mexicans will be looking skyward this week at hot air balloons participating in the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.  Hot air balloon and aviation enthusiasts enjoying the enchanting vision of colorful balloons and special shapes will have another opportunity to study the origins of flight when the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science hosts Da Vinci—The Genius, by Grand Exhibitions from February 10 through July 29, 2018.

French brothers Joseph-Michel Montgolfier and Jacques-Etenne Montgolfier invented and successfully launched the very first the hot air balloon in 1783. The achievement elevated their father to nobility. Fully two centuries before the Montgolfier brothers’ achievement, aviation was, perhaps, the favorite subject of acclaimed Italian genius, Leonardo da Vinci’s many areas of study.

The possibility of people flying through the air...

October 6, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) -- Make this a Halloween to remember for more than just candy and costumes!  Spend Halloween afternoon at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science and indulge in a little Spooky Science!

This is an activity for the entire family.  From noon-4:30PM, there will be lots of spooky nature science activities in the Museum atrium. Build an alien landscape, observe snakes, spiders and creepy critters and distinguish fact from fantasy. 

Throughout the afternoon, at 3, 4 & 5:00PM, settle in for a fun, Halloween-themed laser in the Planetarium.  Entitled Fright Light, this show combines laser characters, beautiful abstract patterns, and music to create a spine-tingling treat. The show features a variety of ghoulish classics, including Thriller by Michael Jackson, Purple People Eater by Sheb Wooley, Iron Man by Black Sabbath, and Attack of the Radioactive Hamsters by Weird Al... Read More...

October 6, 2017

For Immediate Release: October 12, 2017 (Albuquerque, NM) – New Mexico dinosaurs and other extinct reptiles drew huge crowds in Japan, during a yearlong three-city tour of the nation. During a collective 218 days on exhibition at the three venues, the exhibition drew more than 588,000 visitors.  

 “The Japanese we worked with combined cutting-edge robotics technology to create a mesmerizing, life-size reconstruction of the New Mexico dinosaur Bistahieversor that left me speechless,” said Thomas Williamson, Ph.D, Museum Curator for the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science.

 Working with the Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum and the Yomiuri Shimbun (Newspaper), the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science (NMMNHS) loaned seven paleontological specimens and three casts to the Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum as part of a traveling exhibition which ended earlier this month at a museum... Read More...

September 25, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM)The results are in, and the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science (NMMNHS) has announced the winners of the 2017 NatureScapes photo competition. Each year, NMMNHS choses a theme for the photo contest that encourages contestants to examine and understand New Mexico’s natural beauty. This year’s theme - “Water” - invited photographers to explore and re-discover nature throughout the state.  Winning photographs will hang in the gallery from October 21 through January 19, 2018.  

Appropriate to our desert environment, “Water” highlights the importance of water and encouraged participants to think broadly about the topic while remaining focused on natural areas across New Mexico. This year’s winners are:

  • First Place: Virga, Near Watrous, N.M., Cliff Wood
  • Second Place: Sun Sets Over the Waters of Navajo Lake, East Arm shore, Navajo Lake... Read More...
September 22, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) – Why let kids have all the fun this Halloween? Grab your partner and plan a night of ‘Spooky Salsa’ at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science Adult Halloween party Friday, October 20th.

Doors open for Spooky Salsa open at 5:45pm. There will be Salsa lessons by Dance Instructor Karim Armazanduk for $5 per person from 6-6:45pm. From 7:00pm through 11:00pm live music provided by the popular local Cuban-style salsa band, Son Como Son.

There will be a cash bar and food service. The Cooperage is providing bar service, La Mexican restaurant is serving food. And tempting, chocolate goodies come from La Sweet Fountain.

All museum exhibits open including the highly interactive traveling exhibition Wild Music, Songs & Sounds of Life. There will be laser shows in the Planetarium at 8:00pm & 9:00pm. Weather permitting, the Observatory will also be... Read More...

September 14, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM)— Just one month remains to see The Wonderful World of Opals at the New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science.  This one-of-a-kind exhibit disbands after October 15.  It features cut and uncut stones from around the world, including Australia, Mexico, Ethiopia and Peru and a one-of-a-kind rough opal specimen from Australia that weighs over 160 pounds. The exhibit includes set opal jewels from guest curator Katherine Jetter’s own collection. The Australian born, Santa Fe based internationally recognized jewel designer is a GIA graduate gemologist and a leading expert in the opal industry for more than a decade.

"This exceptional collection of opals was curated for this one-time only exhibit by a world leader in the opal industry,” said Margie Marino, director of the New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science. “The Museum is grateful to all the miners and collectors who generously loaned their... Read More...

August 29, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM) --- The New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science has opened a new, one-of-a-kind exhibition about NASA’s Dawn space probe and the amazing discoveries it has made during its 10-year journey through the solar system. This temporary addition to the space science area will be available through mid-2018.

 Dawn traveled to and explored Ceres and Vesta, the largest objects in the main asteroid belt, located between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter. The data and images acquired by Dawn transformed these ancient bodies from fuzzy patches of light into geologic worlds.

Large, detailed wall panels tell the story of how the solar system formed and highlight key features of the main asteroid belt. Photographs, maps, and 3D images provide a spectacular, up-close look at Vesta and Ceres. A video monitor shows computer animations made from data acquired by Dawn’s instruments. A scale model of the spacecraft can be studied... Read More...

August 28, 2017

(Albuquerque, NM)The New Mexico Museum of Natural History & Science (NMMNHS) was selected to participate in the Museum Assessment Program (MAP) administered by the American Alliance of Museums. Through guided self-study and on-site consultation with a museum professional, participation in MAP will empower NMMNHS to better serve the citizens of New Mexico by facilitating its meeting and exceeding the highest professional standards of the museum field.

The museum’s participation is made possible through funding provided by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). MAP helps museums strengthen operations, plan for the future, and meet standards through self-study and a consultative site visit from an expert peer reviewer.

The NMMNHS has chosen to do a MAP Collections Stewardship assessment in order to streamline policies and procedures used in the NMMNHS Collections to ensure the long-term care of specimens,... Read More...

SMNHC in Hagerman

October 29, 2013


Contact: Randall Gann, Public Information Officer

505.252.6869 Email:



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