What's This?
Frozen Tissue

Check out this mystery photo! It's brought to you by Science Explorations, a partnership between the American Museum of Natural History and Scholastic.

dagger shaped item that is 1.3 black at the top and the rest is yellow and gelatinous looking

You're looking at a specimen from the Museum's Frozen Tissue Collection.

Can you guess what it is?


feather of a parrot


skin of a humpback whale


beak of a penguin


tongue of a tyrannosaur

Nope. Try again!
You got it!

ANSWER: skin of a humpback whale

Explore the photo gallery below to examine why scientists collect and freeze tissue samples from whales and other animals. 

Image Credits:

vial illustration (sans double-helix), courtesy of Eucalyp via the Noun Project; all specimens from the Frozen Tissue Collection, frilled leaf-tailed gecko: AMNH / Denis Finnin; cryovat, test tubes: AMNH / Craig Chesek; humpback whale: John J. Mosesso / NBII; coyote: AMNH.