General Question

El_Cadejo's avatar

How can I preserve a hard bodied invertebrates body?

Asked by El_Cadejo (34477points) February 11th, 2010

Sad news everyone…. After being away from home for a couple days due to the snow, I returned home to find mrs mantis dead :(

I want to preserve her body if possible. How would I go about doing this?

this week was 2 years of me having her :’-{

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19 Answers

ArthurPeterson's avatar

here is a link to an article that takes you through it step by step.
http://www.ehow.com/how_2228333_preserve-hardbodied-insects.html.

A simple google search of “preserve insect” brought that up as the first or second hit. Seems to be spot on. I am new to fluther, and I don’t point this out to be a smart ass, but I notice this a lot- i.e. the questions people post on here often require far less effort to find your answer using google than it would to type the question and post it to fluther. I wonder if this is kind of for the fun of the experiment, like a just to see what comes back sort of deal, or if there is something I am missing. Again, I hope that does not come across as sarcastic. I’m honestly curious if you (an experienced user) feel there is some added value that I might be missing inputting it out there on fluther as opposed to running it through google. anyhow, happy mounting and sorry for your loss.

El_Cadejo's avatar

First off i just spent quite some time searching google before asking, and second, its not an insect, its a marine creature.

i probably should have specified that, but i forgot since most users here know of my pet and what she was

faye's avatar

What was it?

ArthurPeterson's avatar

my apologies. again, i did not mean to come off as rude or to suggest it was a silly question.

ETpro's avatar

You can preserve starfish and sand dollars by drying them but you must clean them first. I would think something similar would work.

El_Cadejo's avatar

i should also add there is no way at all to clean the meat from inside the shell without destroying it. While it is hard shelled, it is still very delicate with close to 50 appendages.

faye's avatar

Great pictures on flicka!

ArthurPeterson's avatar

That was a beautiful animal. Very sad. This is an article that goes through preservation methods for various sea animals, including a sea urchin, which I gather is also an invertebrate. Not sure if it will be helpful either. Thought I’d pass it along in hopes you can maybe apply the method to your peacock mantis.
http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/36526/cleaning_and_preserving_sand_dollars.html?singlepage=true&cat=16

El_Cadejo's avatar

Okkk sooo it looks like im going to need to get some Formaldehyde….. where in the fuck do i acquire that?

still i dont know if this will work. none of the animals covered really have much meat to them. I think my best bet is injecting the joints with formaldehyde though.

@faye thanks :)

Cruiser's avatar

Cast her in epoxy!

El_Cadejo's avatar

is that a plausible scenario? like how exactly would that work and what would my end result be like?

i know nothing of epoxy

augustlan's avatar

I’m so sorry, uber. May she rest in peace. :(

davidbetterman's avatar

Spray her with adhesive or shellac.

Shae's avatar

You might try a local funeral home. Explain to them what you want to do and see if they might help with some Formaldehyde.

Or a local college or high school biology teacher could help you out.

Jeruba's avatar

I’m sorry, @uberbatman. I hope your preservation effort succeeds. I wonder if a biology teacher would be a good resource for you.

Buttonstc's avatar

I wonder if a technique called plastination might be possible.

I remember reading about it when they had these traveling exhibitions at major museums of human bodies called Bodyworlds.

I did a quick search on it and came up with several websites, one of which listed suppliers.

Unfortunately I can’t do links on the iPhone and a lot of the websites were in Flash which the iPhone also doesn’t handle.
But from the little I was able to see, evidently there are folks doing it on a much smaller scale for pets and such.

I have no idea how much it would cost though, but just do a Google on the word “Plastination”

I’m so sorry for your loss. I saw the pictures you had and she was so beautiful.

Cruiser's avatar

@Buttonstc That plastination was all done in a very special epoxy…I make epoxy and would be more than happy to donate what ever is needed to preserve this creature!

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