734 animals and nearly 2,000 plants are exhibited in the ‘Natural History Museum’ in Edirne.

In Edirne, the ‘Natural History Museum’ in Trakya University Karaağaç Campus displays 734 animal skeletons and 1923 plants, from bats to wild boars, from sharks to endangered white pelicans and wild cats. Saying that the museum is the work of 40 years of work, Trakya University Biology Department Head Prof. Dr. Yılmaz Çamlıtepe said, “There are around 2,000 examples in our museum. It shows a very unique museum content in the region, Turkey and Europe.”

In the Natural History Museum established in Trakya University Edirne Karaağaç Campus, 734 animal and 1923 plant species are exhibited. Speaker of the Parliament Prof. Dr. In the museum, which Mustafa Şentop opened on January 7, visitors encounter a wide range of species, from bats to wild boars, from sharks to endangered white pelicans and wild cats. Stating that the museum has original content both in Turkey and in Europe, Trakya University Biology Department Head Prof. Dr. Yılmaz Çamlıtepe noted that all preparations were made according to scientific techniques and without hunting.

’40 YEARS EXPOSURE OF THE BIOLOGY DEPARTMENT’ Prof. Explaining the preparation process of Trakya University Natural History Museum, Prof. Dr. Çamlıtepe said, “As Trakya University Biology Department teachers, we have developed plans and strategies for 40 years to protect this richness with scientific methods, to transfer it to future generations and to conduct scientific studies on it. We thought that this 40-year experience should be evaluated. With the support and contributions of Erhan Tabakoğlu and all the teachers of the Biology department, we wanted to present the 40-year efforts of all the teachers of the Biology department to our city of Edirne. By making all these plans, we realized the establishment of the museum within the framework of a big project.” Dr. Providing information about the museum, Çamlıtepe said, “Our main goal here was to contribute to the awareness of nature conservation, as well as to transfer and promote this natural wealth to future generations, and also to create a new tourism destination center in Edirne. We are very happy that we realized this. There are samples from different regions, but mainly from the Thrace region. All these animal and plant samples were prepared in accordance with scientific techniques and no hunting was done. From this point of view, it is very unique both in the region, in Turkey and in Europe. It shows the contents of a museum.” Dr. Çamlıtepe said, “For their scientific studies, both our museum materials and a large number of materials in the museums of the Biology department have been put into service for their studies, which is quite high. Thrace with hundreds of thousands of insect samples, thousands of stuffed animals and skeletons and more than 15 thousand very rich plant samples. University Herbarium has been put into service for these scientific studies. We are proud and happy in this respect.” Dr. Stating that none of the animals exhibited in the museum were hunted, Çamlıtepe said, “The samples we have obtained from all non-governmental organizations and the relevant institutions of the Ministry, and these relations are still continuing. We take such samples when they die or die as a result of accident or illness, and keep them in our deep freezers. Later, our professors and our students prepare them in accordance with scientific methods in their lessons.Currently, around 2,000 specimens are exhibited in our museum, but behind this, hundreds of thousands of invertebrate species, thousands of vertebrate species and more than 15 thousand plant species in the laboratories in the Biology department’s own building are used in Trakya University Herbarium with scientific methods. This museum material will be added here when the building gets bigger and when there are additions.” a very unique ant species, the European red forest ant, is an endangered species of ant. Their nests, which were very dense in the Thrace region in the past, are quite low today. It has dropped below 100 but this should actually be represented by the number of thousands of slots. This species is also taken under protection by the Ministry. This example is especially exhibited in our museum. For example; A butterfly species we call the Thrace Emperor is magnificent. A wild cat, a bird’s upright tail, Edirne Hyacinth is a completely endemic plant native to this region. We also take measures to protect all these. We also exhibit these to our visitors in our museum.” If we disrupt this food chain in nature, if we act to consume the related living things, this will definitely reflect on us in some way. Therefore, if we want to leave a more civilized, more balanced and more beautiful world to our children, we need to show them to our children, teach them and explain their benefits, including ants, plants, vertebrates, birds, and all living things. We need to make them love them so that this balance can work,” he said. There are also endangered animals. Moreover, I was very surprised to see the skeletons. It looks very nice. I’ve never seen it like this before. For example, there is a white pelican. I’ve never seen pelicans before. There were also snakes. I saw insect species that I had not seen before. I liked this place very much.” There are many kinds of animals. I liked very much. I was very surprised to see endangered animals. I didn’t see some insects, I saw them. It is a very beautiful and interesting museum, I recommend them to come,” he said.

Eser Tekinay said, “We found the museum very good, even our second visit. Karaağaç also needed something like this. It attracts tourists, but it also needed it in terms of museums. It filled this gap as well. The large cones from America caught our attention. “I’ve never seen it. It’s a very diverse museum. It’s worthy of Edirne,” he said.

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