History of the BioCorner Embryology (Chick-Hatching) Exhibit of
The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science

Authored By Glenn A. Walsh
Sponsored By Friends of the Zeiss

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News Regarding the BioCorner Embryology Exhibit and Poultry In General

The "BioCorner" Embryology Exhibit, which hatched chicks (and occasionally ducklings) in public view each weekend year-round, was one of the few Life Sciences exhibits or programs at The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science (also known as Buhl Science Center from February of 1982 to August of 1991) in Pittsburgh. The BioCorner was first displayed to the public in May of 1983, continuing on display until about 1990. Also see the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette article in May of 1984.

A similar chick-hatching exhibit was attempted at The Carnegie Science Center, which superseded The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science as a popular Science museum on 1991 October 5.

The earliest Life Sciences program, at The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science, was the " Micro Zoo," which showed visitors in the 1940s and 1950s life in a drop of water. This live demonstration was shown on a projection screen in the Little Science Theater via an old-style overhead-type projector and microscope called an epideoscope.

In July of 1965, "Transpara the Talking Glass Lady" [her skin was actually made of transparent cast-plastic] provided a 15-minute pre-recorded [first on reel-to-reel recording tape; later, on cassette tape] presentation about the organs of the human body. Each organ would be lit, automatically, as she explained the purpose and importance of the organ. There was a general demonstration for the public, as well as a special demonstration designed for children.

In the late 1960s, a sex-education program, called "Wonder of Wonders," was begun, primarily to supplement the sex-education programs in the schools. School groups would come to the Wherrett Memorial Classroom (a gift of the Pittsburgh Foundation, Wherrett Memorial Fund), adjacent to the Bowdish Gallery (home of the Miniature Railroad and Village), to see the special educational modules in this program. This classroom, which was used for other classes and meetings from time-to-time, had originally been called the "Club Room," for meetings of amateur Science groups such as the Amateur Astronomers' Association of Pittsburgh (which was instrumental in the creation of Buhl Planetarium), Amateur Transmitters' Association of Western Pennsylvania (group of amateur radio enthusiasts), Greater Pittsburgh Aquarium Society (group interested in tropical and other types of fish, which co-sponsored Buhl's annual Tropical Fish Show in the Autumn), and the Mineral and Lapidary Society of Pittsburgh.

"Wonder of Wonders," was carefully explained to children by a teacher who was a registered nurse (Maxine Kelanic was the instructor during the 1980s and early 1990s). Prior to any visit of a school group to "Wonder of Wonders," a special presentation of the program (usually scheduled in the evening) was arranged for the parents of children who were scheduled to see the program. Although parents had the right to exclude their child from seeing the program, this seldom happened. Occasionally, this program would be offered to the general public. However, it was primarily a program offered to school groups.

And, as previously mentioned, the Greater Pittssburgh Aquarium Society presented an annual Tropical Fish Show at Buhl Planetarium each year in the early Autumn.

In May of 1983, Buhl Planetarium staff member Glenn A. Walsh was asked to take on a special project at The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science in Pittsburgh. The new President of Buhl, Joshua Whetzel, had seen a chick-hatching exhibit at Chicago's Museum of Science and Industry; he wished to have a similar exhibit at Buhl.

Well, having grown-up in the major metropolitan area of Pittsburgh, Mr. Walsh knew nothing about hatching chickens. So, as Mr. Walsh developed the "BioCorner" Embryology Exhibit, he had a very steep learning curve in his first year as Curator of the "BioCorner."

Fortunately, one of the nation's premier aviaries, the Pittsburgh Conservatory-Aviary in Allegheny Commons Park West [now known as the National Aviary], is located two short blocks from Buhl Planetarium. They were a great assistance in helping start this new exhibit, as was the Pennsylvania State University Cooperative Extension Service.

Well, once this exhibit became available to the public, it quickly became one of the most popular exhibits in the Buhl Planetarium building, particularly for young children. Mr. Walsh was Curator of the BioCorner for four years [1983 May to 1987 May], before becoming Coordinator of Buhl Planetarium's Astronomical Observatory and a Planetarium Lecturer.

The exhibit, which included second-hand equipment which had been used on a commercial egg-laying farm in southeastern Ohio, consisted of the following:

1) Large incubator, which turned the eggs automatically on a regular schedule, every two hours.

One of the major problems was finding good eggs. The Penn State Cooperative Extension Service was able to connect Mr. Walsh with egg-laying farms in the far-reaches of the metro area [primarily in Beaver, Butler, and Washington Counties; Pittsburgh is the county-seat of Allegheny County]. The farmers [over four years, several different farms were used] would usually bring eggs to Buhl Planetarium on a weekly basis, often on their way to their second job in the City [most farmers in the metro area needed a second job].

The eggs were kept in a special refrigerator, which was kept at a temperature no lower than +45 degrees Fahrenheit; they could be kept at this temperature for a few days before being set for hatching. The incubation process would begin once the eggs were set in the incubator.

During the incubation process, a candler (wooden box with a light bulb inside) would be used to check the embryo development (if any) inside an incubated egg. The egg would simply be placed on top of a special hole (just a little smaller than the size of the egg) of the candler, which allowed light to shine through the egg, hence, the shadow showing the size of embryo development.

One awful problem was with rotten eggs. However, Mr. Walsh did not know they were rotten until they were heated-up by the incubator and exploded! Termed "egg-splosions" by the staff [Buhl Planetarium Floor Manager Eric G. Canali called them "Chirp-nobel events"], they often stunk-up the entire building--Mr. Walsh was not very popular after one of these explosions!

Mr. Walsh relates one instance when an egg-splosion occurred while a television news crew was in the building, taping a segment regarding the impending November opening of the Miniature Railroad and Village. The news reporter told Buhl Planetarium public relations officer Mary Pat McCarthy, "If you really wanted us to leave, you could have just said so!"

2) Large hatcher / hatchery. As all of the equipment used was second-hand [from a former egg-laying farm], this hatchery stood upright on a table, as did the incubator. The Buhl maintenance staff placed glass doors on both incubator and hatchery, so the public could see the incubation and hatching process.

However, in the case of the hatcher / hatchery, the way the hatchery stood on the table meant that the public could only see the hatching process, while hatching took place on the side facing the glass door. And, being on a table meant that children had trouble watching the chick hatch.

So, one evening, a very active Buhl Planetarium volunteer, Lee Madden, and Mr. Walsh took the hatchery into the Workshop. That evening, they completely revamped the hatchery. When finished, the hatchery was designed to sit on the floor, with the glass door facing the ceiling. Now, children could look down through the glass door and easily see the chicks hatch. And, since the hatching eggs were placed in the bottoms [with the lid removed] of egg cartons [so the eggs were, mostly, standing upright], children could watch the chick peck its way all around the egg, until it kicked its way out of the egg.

And, children did watch the entire process, which usually took about 45 minutes. Often, when a chick was starting to hatch, a Buhl staff member [often, Mr. Walsh] would make an announcement on the public address system. There would then be a crowd around the hatchery until the chick kicked its way out of the egg--when, often, the crowd would cheer and/or applaud the chick's successful self-extraction from the egg (and, by this time, the chick was quite exhausted!).

Mr. Walsh would schedule [with a 21 day incubation period for chicks, and 28 days for ducklings which also were occasionally hatched, you could schedule the hatches to occur within a 24-hour period] the hatches to take place on Saturdays and Sundays, when there would be the greatest attendance of children. Mr. Walsh usually set three dozen eggs to hatch each week. Usually, at least half of the eggs hatched. The hatch rate was sometimes reduced during the cold-weather months. In the Spring and Summer time periods, the hatch rate got as high as 75-90 per cent.

In addition to weekends, Mr. Walsh also scheduled chicks to hatch each day during the Easter, Thanksgiving, and Christmas holiday periods, when children did not have school, as well as the Monday holidays throughout the year. Eggs were also scheduled to hatch during Buhl Planetarium special events [including special events for Buhl members], media events, and building rentals by outside organizations.

3) Two brooders [with heaters in the rear, for the chicks; a cloth partition separated the heated section of the brooder from the section visible to the public] were used to house the chicks about a day after hatching. The chicks were usually kept about two weeks. After two weeks, they were given to an egg-laying farm [often, the same farm which provided the eggs].

One of the first things children would ask would be what happens to the chicks. Hence, Mr. Walsh felt it was very important to be able to, honestly, tell them that the chicks would continue living at an egg-laying farm.

Another of the major problems was finding an egg-laying farm that would take the new chicks, particularly in the Winter. Another option would have been to donate the chicks to the Aviary, or the Zoo, to be used as food for the animals. However, Mr. Walsh purposely avoided this option so he could honestly tell children that the chicks would continue living at an egg-laying farm.

According to Mr. Walsh, it was not easy, but for the four years he was Curator of the BioCorner, the chicks were always sent to an egg-laying farm. There was one brief exception. One Saturday morning, the Director of the Aviary (Lindsay Clack, who was in Buhl Planetarium that day while accompanying his child to a Buhl Science class) asked for about a dozen chicks. At that time, in the mid-1980s, the Aviary had just received two baby snowy-white owls from the Seattle Zoo (the last of this pair of snowy-white owls, a female, died in 2008, according to a National Aviary Bird Keeper during the annual Allegheny Regional Asset District free-day on Sunday Afternoon, 2015 October 4) . For some reason the baby owls were refusing to eat the frozen and thawed chicks that the Aviary regularly purchased from an Ohio supplier. The Director felt the owls needed fresh food. So, in this one case, Mr. Walsh did allow the Director of the Aviary to take about a dozen chicks for the baby owls. However, this was the only exception, while Mr. Walsh was Curator of the BioCorner.

Through the years of operation of the BioCorner exhibit, eggs for hatching chicks were supplied by various farmers in the suburban Pittsburgh counties of Beaver, Butler, and Washington. Most hatched chicks were then returned to these farmers two or three weeks after they were hatched. Normally, the farmers delivered the eggs and picked-up the chicks, at Buhl Planetarium, each week. In most cases, the farmers also had full-time jobs in the city (e.g. one from Washington County was a technician at AT&T, in their 18-floor office building on Grant Street in Downtown Pittsburgh, while another from Beaver County was a prospective developer interested in developing a marina, which was not built, near the site of the proposed Carnegie Science Center), as farming was not usually enough to support their families. Hence, the farmers usually delivered the eggs, and picked-up the chicks, immediately after work at their city job.

Buhl Planetarium allowed the public to pet, feed, and hold the young birds. In fact, Buhl management strongly believed that hands-on exhibitry greatly promoted the learning of Science and Technology. A special illustrated poster [photographs taken by free-lance photographer Lynne S.W. Comunale] was prepared to show the public the proper way to pet, feed, and hold the birds. And, for children who would hold a chick, Mr. Walsh often told them that we had paper towels, in case the chick left a little "gift" in the child's hand, which, of course, did happen on occasion.

For awhile, one of the small wading pools was placed next to the BioCorner. Mr. Walsh could place some of the older chicks [which did not need to receive periodic heat in the brooder] in the wading pool, during the daytime when the building was open to the public, so it was easier for children to interact with the young birds. When ducklings were hatched, this wading pool was used to allow the young ducks to take a swim.

The Buhl Planetarium building has five exhibit galleries. From time-to-time, the BioCorner was moved from one to another until it had been in four [Great Hall and East Gallery on the first floor; Mezzanine and Octagon Gallery on the lower level] of the five galleries. Bowdish Gallery, which was the home of the well-known Miniature Railroad and Village, was the only gallery that the BioCorner never called home.

As with most institutions, Buhl Planetarium did not have enough employees to staff all exhibit galleries. Hence, even though Buhl allowed the public to touch and hold the chicks, there was not always a staff member present unless Mr. Walsh, or a volunteer, were available. Several other volunteers did help Mr. Walsh with the BioCorner, usually on a weekly basis, including a very active high school student named Becky Roolf (Ms. Roolf's contribution to the Great Pittsburgh Friendship Quilt, produced at Buhl Planetarium). Ms. Roolf, often with her father Vincent Roolf and younger sister Jennifer Roolf, volunteered nearly every Friday evening for about a year, before Buhl evening hours on Thursday through Sunday evenings were eliminated in June of 1984 [Mr. Walsh successfully lobbied for the return of Friday evening hours, beginning on 1986 June 13, which continued until Buhl Planetarium's closing as a public museum on 1991 August 31]; after the end of evening hours in 1984, they volunteered on weekends.

The lack of continual staff monitoring of the young birds did concern some visitors. Hence, for this reason, Buhl Planetarium was visited by the County Animal Protection Officer twice. He understood the dilemma of the BioCorner exhibit. In the end, the BioCorner was moved to a permanent location in the first floor's Great Hall, near the Information Desk which was nearly always staffed. So, if there was any problem, a staff member from the Information Desk could quickly check-out the situation.

4) Along with the incubator, hatchery [sometimes called simply, "hatcher"], and brooders, there was a display, with embryos in jars containing formaldehyde, showing the chick development for all 21 days of incubation.

Occasionally, when eggs became available, the BioCorner also hatched ducklings. As ducklings always require a lot of additional water, they are three times messier than chicks! However, ducklings, which grow much faster than chicks, allowed Buhl Planetarium to easily demonstrate imprinting behavior to children. Mr. Walsh would often place four or five ducklings on the floor, near a child. Then, the child would be told to, slowly, start walking. The ducklings would immediately fall in line and start following the child.

As with other Buhl programs, Mr. Walsh assisted Boy Scouts and Girl Scouts with their merit badge projects, in relation to animal development. Occasionally, chicks were taken on outreach to schools, special community events, and on one occasion to a local television talk program ["The Jack Bogut Show" on WTAE-TV 4].

At the request of a Buhl Planetarium science classes instructor, Mr. Walsh took the chicks on a field trip to Saints Simon and Jude elementary school, in the Pittsburgh suburb of Scott Township, where this instructor taught full-time. This school, which opened in 1958, closed in 2010.

On another field trip, the chicks, along with the egg hatchery, were taken for display in the children's section of Pittsburgh's annual August event, the Three Rivers Regatta, in Point State Park directly across Commonwealth Place from the Hilton Hotel. This children's section was succeeded the following year by an International Children's Festival, to be held each year in May, on the Lower North Side. For many years, this event was held in Allegheny Square, in front of Buhl Planetarium, as well as in Allegheny Commons West Park. In 2009, this event was moved to Oakland.

At one Buhl staff meeting, President Joshua Whetzel suggested that, due to the great success of the BioCorner, the exhibit be expanded with the addition of a cow, for milking, to show children where the milk they drink originates. Such a new component of the BioCorner would have allowed children to actually milk the cow, at specified times during the day. However, due to the small size of the Buhl Planetarium building, and the lack of proper facilities for the care of a cow, this suggestion was not implemented.

Over the years, the BioCorner received visitors from all around the world, as well as many political officials and civic leaders in the Pittsburgh region. The late Pittsburgh Mayor Richard S. Caliguiri [who met an untimely death at age 56, due to a rare blood disease, on 1988 May 6], visited the BioCorner following a Buhl Board of Directors meeting in the Wherrett Memorial Classroom; he agreed to pet a chick, but would not hold a chick, even after Mr. Walsh's urging.

On 1984 May 25, Pennsylvania Governor Richard Thornburgh and his family, accompanied by Buhl President Joshua Whetzel, visited the BioCorner, following their attendance at a 9:15 p.m. laser-light concert in Buhl Planetarium. As the Buhl exhibit galleries normally closed at 9:30 p.m. on Friday evenings, the BioCorner [which, by its very nature, must remain activated 24 hours per day] was the only exhibit available for viewing by the Thornburgh family following the laser show [laser-light shows continued to be performed, on Friday and Saturday evenings at 10:30 and 11:45 p.m. in Buhl Planetarium, while the exhibit galleries remained closed--although, the Buhl Planetarium Observatory remained open on Friday evenings until 10:30 p.m., weather-permitting, from 1986-1991].

Peter Thornburgh, son of the Governor and his wife Ginny, particularly appreciated the BioCorner, as Peter is mentally-challenged. The following year, Peter and his parents were named "Family of the Year" by the Pennsylvania Association of Retarded Citizens.

In November of 1985, the BioCorner exhibit in Pittsburgh's Buhl Planetarium received a special visitor. A young girl from Yukon, Oklahoma, a suburb of Oklahoma City, was waiting in Pittsburgh for a heart-lungs transplant at the Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. Kimberly Fuller had been waiting for several months for donor organs appropriate to her age and size.

So, one day her mother, Sandra, and a friend she was living with in Pittsburgh, Judi Landa, brought her to Buhl Planetarium for a visit; Buhl Planetarium Floor Supervisor Fred Peelor assisted with Ms. Fuller's visit to Buhl. Due to her weakened condition [at the time, she only weighed 35 pounds], she visited in a wheelchair [by the middle of 1982, Federal funds funneled through the City of Pittsburgh had been used to make most of the Buhl Planetarium building accessible to the disabled]. Ms. Fuller suffered from a rare degenerative condition that destroyed her heart and lungs called fibrosing pulmonary alveolitis.

When she saw the chicks in the BioCorner, she was overjoyed. She fell in love with one little black chick [official type: Barred Plymouth Rock-- photograph of a Barred Plymouth Rock baby chick]. She carried that chick with her for the rest of the visit to Buhl Planetarium, including the visit to the Miniature Railroad and Village in the Bowdish Gallery on the lower level.

The evening after visiting Buhl Planetarium, her 18 months of waiting for suitable transplant organs ended with a successful transplant operation. At age 9, Kimberly Fuller became the youngest heart and lung transplant patient in the United States on 1985 November 20; second youngest in the world. She credited this good fortune to the "lucky chick" she had carried with her, during her visit to Buhl Planetarium.

This particular chick had special meaning to Ms. Fuller and the Buhl Planetarium staff. Fortunately, Chris Rishack, a Buhl Planetarium employee who was involved with Buhl's robotics program, lived on a farm in suburban Butler County, about 25 miles north of Pittsburgh. Mr. Rishack took the "lucky chick" to his farm to live, once the chick was too large to remain at Buhl Planetarium.

Organ rejection continued to be a problem, in the following years, and Ms. Fuller was readmitted to Children's Hospital in 1987 and 1989. She was placed back on Children's Hospital's transplant waiting list in 1992, when it was found her lungs were scarred from organ rejection. Ms. Fuller received a second set of donor lungs on 1994 April 20.

The arteries of her original transplanted heart had started to be blocked. In 2001, doctors were considering her eligibility for a second heart transplant. Ms. Fuller died on 2001 April 8 at the age of 25.

However, before her death, she succeeded in her dream of becoming an author, with the 1997 publication of a science-fiction novel for teenagers, titled Home. She had also earned a bachelor of arts degree in English from Oklahoma City University in May of 2000. Throughout her life, she was a very strong advocate for organ donation.

A similar chick-hatching exhibit was attempted at The Carnegie Science Center, which superseded The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science as a popular Science museum on 1991 October 5. The Carnegie Science Center's chick-hatching exhibit was part of a new "Exploration Station Junior" exhibit, which opened on the Science Center's fourth floor on 2000 February 18.

The Carnegie Science Center's chick-hatching exhibit was immediately protested by a Machipongo, Virginia-based animal-rights group called United Poultry Concerns. In fact, this organization picketed The Carnegie Science Center on Earth Day (April 22), 2000 and held a candlelight vigil in opposition to the chick hatchery.

The Carnegie Science Center chick-hatching exhibit was located inside a large glass display, specially-designed to ease cleaning the exhibit. As the chicks remained inside the large glass display case while being in the Science Center, visitors were not able to pet, feed, or hold the young birds.

The Carnegie Science Center discontinued the chick-hatching exhibit in late September of 2001. It seems the acquisition of good quality eggs, for incubation, had been a problem. Science Center Facilities Manager Tom Flaherty was also quoted as saying that the chick hatchery was not meeting the Science Center's "educational objectives any more so we stopped hatching chicks."

Glenn A. Walsh
2003 September 27

News and Other Information Regarding Chickens and Ducks

More Information Regarding
Chickens, Ducks, and Other Poultry

Buhl Planetarium visitor John Daniel Potemra (then of the McKeesport suburb of Versailles Borough) stands outside at the visitors' entrance to The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science (then known as the Buhl Science Center), on 1983 September 24 (5). He stands beside a large sign, mounted between the two visitor doors (at that time, recently converted from the original two revolving doors to two large glass doors, to provide accessibility to the disabled), which advertises some of the major attractions in the building including the "Pixel-Paint Pots" artistic touch computer, Computers [in the Computer Learning Lab (CLL)], "BioCorner" Chick-Hatching Exhibit, Planetarium Sky Shows, Laserium Laser-Light Concerts, and Demonstrations and Lectures.

Flatow, Ira. "Science From Iowa’s Prairies." Radio Program.
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The Department of Agriculture recently approved the production of what’s known as cultivated meat, which is chicken grown in a lab.

Image of Running Chicken Nebula Social Media Post: Facebook.
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Kelly, Mary Louise. "Meet Peanut, the world's oldest chicken." Radio News Program: All Things Considered (Audio and Text Report)
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Bushwick, Sophie. "From Backyards To Barn Yards, The Surprising Science Of Chickens." Radio Program Segment.
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"Vincent John Roolf". Obituary.
VTDigger.org 2023 Feb. 20. First retrieved 2023 Feb. 25.
Vincent John Roolf died peacefully in hospice care at CVMC on January 30, 2023, with his daughters by his side, having lived 93 adventure- and memory-filled years and remaining curious, thoughtful, and himself to the end.
Born on January 7, 1930 in Pittsburgh to Joseph C. and Lenora C. Roolf, Vince lived in the rural Western Pennsylvania neighborhood of Turtle Creek until his teen years, when his family relocated to the city.
Vince raised his two daughters to be curious and compassionate. Family trips often led to Pittsburgh-area libraries, parks, nature centers, museums, or symphonies. Carnegie Museum and Buhl Planetarium were two favorite destinations. In retirement, he volunteered doing trail work, particularly at Beechwood Farms, Barking Slopes, and along the Rachel Carson Trail. (Vincent Roolf and his daughters Becka and Gwenivere volunteered weekly in the mid-1980s, Friday evenings or Saturdays, at the original Buhl Planetarium; on Friday evenings, Becka assisted Glenn A. Walsh with the BioCorner Embryology, Chick-Hatching Exhibit.)
Vince and his daughters relocated to Montpelier in the mid-aughts.
Vince is predeceased by his parents and his siblings Norman, Rosemary, Ray, Paul, Annamae, and Dorothy. He is survived by his younger sister, Bernadette, and his daughters Becka and Gwenivere.
Also: Facebook Obituary.

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Attenborough, Sir David. "The Egg: Life’s Perfect Invention." Science Television Episode.
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Hayes-Freeland, Lynne. "Chicken And Egg Rescued From Bridge."
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Goldsmith, Marlisa. "Chicken, egg rescued from McKeesport-Duquesne Bridge."
WPXI-TV 11 Pittsburgh 2017 May 2.

Blackstock, Peter. "You can lead baby ducks to water, and you can make them swim." Blog-Post.
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Simon, Scott. "An Artist Incubating Chicken Eggs Is No Joke. But Is It Art?" Radio Interview.
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"Think chicken—think intelligent, caring and complex'."
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"Ducklings 'maintain two separate memory banks of visual information'."
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Segment on the history of the chicken begins approximately 20 minutes after the beginning of the program.

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YouTube video clip of "Nest-spresso" comedy skit on NBC-TV weekly program Saturday Night Live, regarding
"Urban farming is made easy with Nest-spresso, which incubates a fertilized chicken egg in minutes."

Lockhart, Brian. "Finch administration hatches chicken plan." Connecticut Post, Bridgeport 2014 March 26.
Regulations allowing the ownership of chickens by individuals in Connecticut's largest city is being considered.

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This new dinosaur find was nicknamed, 'Chicken from Hell,' by its discoverers at Pittsburgh's Carnegie Museum of Natural History.

"PETA wants roadside memorial for killed chickens."
WXIA-TV 11 Atlanta 2014 Feb.6.

Walsh, Glenn A. "Laserium: 40th Anniversary."
SpaceWatchtower 2013 Nov. 19.

Today (November 19) marks the 40th anniversary of the musical concert set to laser lights known as Laserium, once seen in many planetaria worldwide, including Pittsburgh's original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science (a.k.a. Buhl Science Center). As Laserium is considered the first on-going laser show that was not part of a special or one-time event, it is also thought that Laserium launched the international laser display industry.
Pennsylvania Governor Dick Thornburgh and his family visited Buhl Planetarium on 1984 May 25 to see Laserium. After the laser-light concert, the Governor and his family spent ten minutes viewing the BioCorner Embryology Exhibit and petting, feeding, and holding the young chicks, before leaving Buhl Planetarium. This exhibit was of particular interest to the Governor's son, Peter, who has physical and intellectual disabilities.

Parrish, Tory N. "National Aviary appoints interim director to permanent post."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review On-Line 2013 June 26.

Gallagher, Christina. "Authorities seize chickens, ducks, pigeons, peacock from illegal slaughterhouse in Jefferson Hills."
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Jackson, Peter. "Former Pa. Gov. George Leader dies at 95."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review / Associated Press 2013 May 9.

Former Pennsylvania Gov. George M. Leader, the son of a chicken farmer who was elected to the state's highest office before he turned 40, died Thursday after a brief illness. He was 95.

Nelson Jones, Diana. "Pittsburgh's National Aviary, the nation's premier 'bird zoo,' celebrates its 60th anniversary."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 2012 Sept. 30.
Includes brief history: beginnings as the Pittsburgh Conservatory-Aviary (expanded from the North Side's original Phipps Conservatory), expanding to what today is the National Aviary.

Deasy, Deborah. "Hampton board says no to keeping chickens, goats on residential property."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 2012 Aug. 29.

Vidonic, Bill. "Farm shows on alert for swine flu; none found in Pennsylvania."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 2012 Aug. 11.

Walsh, Glenn A. "Buhl Planetarium Chick Curator Revisits Chickens at Carnegie Library." Blog Posting.
SpaceWatchtower 2012 April 11.
Regarding former Buhl Planetarium Embryology Exhibit Curator Glenn A. Walsh's attendance of an urban chicken farming
program at the historic West End Branch of The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh. Includes a photograph of Mr. Walsh holding
a mature chicken during the program.

Bluestein, Greg. "Explosion destroys home of Ga. 'Chicken Man."
Google/AP 2012 March 26.

"Scientists check out egg-laying rooster."
Web.Orange.co.uk News 2012 Feb. 10.
Chinese scientists are investigating a bizarre case in which a cockerel apparently started laying eggs after all the hens were eaten.
The birds owner Huang Li, 47, kept the rooster together with seven hens on his small farm at Chumiao village, Mengcheng city, in central China's Anhui province.

Walsh, Glenn A. "Former Buhl Science Center President Dies." Obituary.
SpaceWatchtower 2012 Jan. 29.
Joshua Whetzel, who transformed Pittsburgh's original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science and spearheaded
construction of The Carnegie Science Center, dies at age 90.

Weiss, Piper. "Is this chicken too sexy? PETA thinks so." Blog.
Yahoo! Shine: Food 2011 Sept. 29.

Walsh, Glenn A. "Space Nebula "Chicken" from Buhl Planetarium?" Electronic Mail-Group Message.
South Hills Backyard Astronomers Mail-Group 2011 Sept. 21.

"Surprising New 'Space Chicken' Photo Wows Astronomers."
Space.com 2011 Sept. 21.

Hegeman, Roxana. "Kan. poultry farm loses 4,300 turkeys in heat wave."
New York Post/AP On-Line 2011 July 12.

A heat wave that has pushed temperatures well over 100 degrees has killed tens of thousands of turkeys and chickens in Kansas and North Carolina and left farmers across the lower part of the country struggling to cool off their flocks.

Neuman, William. "Egg Producers and Humane Society Urging Federal Standard on Hen Cages."
The New York Times On-Line 2011 July 7.

Simbra, Dr. Maria. "Urban Chicken Farming Gains Popularity In Pittsburgh."
KDKA-TV 2, Pittsburgh 2011 June 24.

Gray, Lizabeth. "Forget Cats and Dogs, Try a Chicken." Blog.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette On-Line 2011 June 11.

"Chicks in the Hood Urban Chicken Coop Tour." News Release.
The Urban Gardener 2011 June 11.

Stobbe, Mike. "Salmonella outbreak tied to chicks, ducklings."
The Roanoke Times On-Line/AP 2011 June 9.

Nelson Jones, Diana. "Pittsburgh Urban Chicken Coop Tour to be held on Sunday."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 2011 June 9.

Roth, Mark. "Youth 'egg-static' over hunt for knowledge."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 2011 April 24.
Children learn the history of eggs at The Carnegie Museum of Natural History's annual Easter egg hunt.

"Beaver County farmer loses chickens in barn fire."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review On-Line 2011 April 3.
Click here to learn how eggs were delivered to, and chicks returned from, Buhl Planetarium by suburban Pittsburgh farmers.

McNeal, Amy. "BAWKyard Chickens." On-Line Magazine.
The New Colonist 2010 Dec.

Kalson, Sally. "Obituary: Eugene Holmes Shaffer Jr. / Teacher and WQED's 'Mr. Science'." Obituary.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 2010 Aug. 12.

"In the summer of 1959, he learned that the educational TV station WQED was looking for a science teacher whose lessons would be broadcast live into elementary and junior high school classrooms. The show would be underwritten by the Ford Foundation.
"I entered a contest where WQED invited 12 young male science teachers to come to the studio and teach a 15-minute lesson on oxygen," Mr. Shaffer wrote in a letter to his granddaughter. "These were filmed on 16mm film. I was chosen...
"Once, his lab assistant, Preston Ginsburg, used time-lapse photography to show the hatching of a chick. That tape was watched repeatedly at the station before air time, but the last viewer forgot to rewind so the aired segment depicted a reverse process, with the baby chick going back into its shell. Mr. Shaffer arranged for Fred Rogers to show the segment that afternoon in its correct order. He also brought in guest lecturers from PPG, Gulf Oil, Bell Telephone and U.S. Steel...
"After one year, the Ford funding ended, and Mr. Shaffer went back to the classroom, but his taped lessons were re-broadcast into schools for two more years."

"What are “Easter Egg” Chickens?"
FarmersAlmanac.com 2010 May 24.
(Posted 2017 April 12)

Henry, Reg. "Playing chicken." Blog.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette On-Line 2010 May 18.
Regarding tic-tac-toe playing chicken in Monterey, California.


News articles regarding the 2010 closure of Saints Simon and Jude School
which received a visit from Buhl Planetarium chicks in the mid-1980s:

Gilbert Brown, Carole. "Parents dismayed at SS. Simon & Jude Catholic School closure."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 2010 May 20.

Stouffer, Rick. "SS. Simon and Jude will be 16th elementary shuttered in five years."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 2010 May 17.

"Catholic elementary school in Scott to close."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 2010 May 11.

Gilbert Brown, Carole. "SS. Simon & Jude Catholic School working to remain open."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 2010 May 6.


"Denver Zoo Unveils Baby Mandarin Albino Duck."
KCNC-TV CBS 4, Denver 2009 June 26.

Cato, Jason. "In Pittsburgh neighborhoods, clusters of cluckers produce meat, eggs."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 2009 Jan. 2.

"State College permits four chickens at each home."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review On-Line/AP 2008 Dec. 9.

"Plum denies request for chicken variance."
Pittsburgh Tribune-Review 2008 Oct. 22.

"Cows' compass is pure animal magnetism."
CNN/AP 2008 Aug. 26.
Addition of a cow to BioCorner exhibit was once contemplated.

"Weirton enlists feds' aid in dealing with chickens."
Charleston Daily Mail/AP 2008 Aug. 22.
"Wild chickens roaming Weirton."
Charleston Gazette/AP 2008 Aug. 15.
"Wild Chickens Running Free In Weirton."
WTOV-TV 9, Steubenville OH 2008 Aug. 15.

Arens, Curt. "Strut, Cluck, Cackle."
American Profile Magazine (Newspaper Supplement) 2008 June 22.
Wayne (Nebraska) Chicken Show, a celebration of the town’s
early days when nearly all local farmers raised chickens.

"Celebrity chicken lays green eggs."
BBC 2008 Jan. 30.

* 2007 April 7 - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette:
Live Easter pets have little chance of survival By John Hayes

* 2006 Feb. 22 - LiveScience.com:
Surprise: Chickens Can Grow Teeth By Bjorn Carey

Pitz, Marylynne. "Students are peepers too at Buhl."
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 1984 May 22: 5-W.
(Westmoreland County zoned edition of newspaper)

"People have been flocking to the simple barnyard exhibit (at Pittsburgh's original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science, a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), which has been operating under the ever-watchful eye of curator Glenn Walsh since last June."

Pitz, Marylynne. "Peepers, What's more popular at Buhl -- the chickens or the eggs?"
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 1984 May 22: 5.
"People have been flocking to the simple barnyard exhibit (at Pittsburgh's original Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science, a.k.a. Buhl Science Center), which has been operating under the ever-watchful eye of curator Glenn Walsh since last June."

Other Internet Web Sites of Interest

History of The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science, Pittsburgh -
Including the Oldest Operable, Major Planetarium Projector in the World !

History of the Astronomical Observatory of
The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science
, Pittsburgh

History of The Adler Planetarium and Astronomy Museum, Chicago -
America's First Major Planetarium !

History of Astronomer, Educator, and Optician John A. Brashear

History of Andrew Carnegie and Carnegie Libraries

The Duquesne Incline, Pittsburgh -
Historic Cable Car Railway Serving Commuters and Tourists since 1877 !

Authored By Glenn A. Walsh
Sponsored By Friends of the Zeiss

This Internet Web Page:
< https://buhlplanetarium4.tripod.com/biocorner/historybiocorner.html >
Internet Web Cover Page: < http://www.planetarium.cc >
Electronic Mail: < biocorner@planetarium.cc >

Return to Exhibits and Programs of
The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science

Internet Web Site Master Index for the History of
The Buhl Planetarium and Institute of Popular Science, Pittsburgh

Disclaimer Statement: This Internet Web Site is not affiliated with the
Andrew Carnegie Free Library and Music Hall, Henry Buhl, Jr. Planetarium and Observatory,
The Carnegie Science Center, The Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh/Carnegie Institute, or The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

This Internet, World Wide Web Site administered by Glenn A. Walsh.
Unless otherwise indicated, all pages in this web site are --
(C) Copyright 2003-2014, Glenn A. Walsh, All Rights Reserved.
Contact Web Site Administrator: biocorner@planetarium.cc

This Internet Web Site created 2003 September 27.
Last modified : Sunday, 19-May-2024 02:02:17 EDT.
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