Any new specimens are typically from window-kills, since the Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918 limited the collecting of birds, eggs or nests, except when expressly permitted by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. It is rare to see even a small part of a bird and egg collection such as this, Graef said.
Brittingham will bring teaching samples of furs and deer jawbones, Graef noted, as well as about a dozen types of furs and skins, including beaver and mink, that visitors may touch and compare. "And we will ask visitors to help us 'age' deer by comparing jawbone and tooth growth," she said.
The Penn State collection, which now is used solely for the teaching of bird identification in vertebrate and ornithology laboratories, also includes an extensive collection of bird wings and eggs.
Operated by Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences, the museum is welcoming visitors every Sunday afternoon during Penn State home football weekends as part of an initiative to increase public awareness of the museum's collection.
The last open house this fall, on Nov. 30, will be the annual celebration of the Pasto Museum, which will feature an ice cream social.
Graef explained that the open houses help the public appreciate the time when energy for work was supplied by the power of humans and animals.
"By seeing and touching tools and equipment used in early agriculture and rural life, people will better understand how early technological developments led to modern-day advancements," she said.
More information on the museum and its open houses is available at the website. To receive information and event reminders via email, send a message to PastoAgMuseum@psu.edu. Graef can be reached at 814-863-1383 or by email at email@example.com.
Located on the Ag Progress Days site at the Russell E. Larson Agricultural Research Center at Rock Springs -- 9 miles southwest of State College on Route 45 -- the museum features hundreds of rare farm and home implements from the "muscle-power era," before the advent of electricity and gasoline-powered engines.