Date: Fri, 11 Sep 1998 18:32:07 -0400
Reply-To: Conchologists of America List <CONCH-L@UGA.CC.UGA.EDU>
Sender: Conchologists of America List <CONCH-L@UGA.CC.UGA.EDU>
From: Lynn Scheu <amconch@IX.NETCOM.COM>
Subject: Re: Oak drawers dangerous for shells ?!
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I don't know how to direct you to our previous discussions of shell
deterioration caused by oak cabinets and such because we don't have a
searchable archive for Conch-L. It is arranged differently: you must
search through two-week (approx.) periods by subject through the two and a
half years that Conch-L has been around. And today, with the Starr report
(EEK! I MENTIONED IT!!!) being released, would be a difficult time to do
this because the net is crowded by news junkies and is moving like molasses
on a cold day.
There are chemicals (lignin) in the wood of oak (all oak, I believe,
veneer, chipboard etc. as well as solid oak) that react with the moisture
and carbon dioxide in the air to form chemicals which will etch shells, and
which are especially dangerous to those shells with glossy surfaces like
cypraeas, olives and marginellas. This is not a big danger in temperate
climates, especially if the shells are aired and cleaned and dry, but in
hot, humid locations without air conditioning, it is almost a sure thing
that your shells will develop this condition, sometimes known as Byne's
Disease, if stored in wood cabinets.
I am now typing an old but still, I trust, current pair of articles by the
late F.R.E. "Ted Davies" of British Columbia, as published in the June 1997
COA Bulletin/American Conchologist. [15(2):9]. They deal mainly with the
tropical problem, but touch on a lot of aspects of such shell
deterioration, including the effects of wood cabinets and wood products
(paper, cardboard) in NW Europe, large areas of North America and other
temperate regions. The second of the articles offers some suggestions for
fighting such deterioration, including some unconventional, even
outrageous suggestions from Ted with tongue in cheek on how to preserve
that favorite specimen from environmental ravages..
Since the articles amount to a long posting, I hesitate to send them to the
list, but will email a copy to anyone who requests one OFF the list. If you
request one ON-list, you can't have one! <G!>
Also, I am hoping to post them on the Conch-Net, COA's website at
<http://coa.acnatsci.org/conchnet/ > as soon as our esteemed webmaster Deb
Wills gets back on her keyboard after some surgery this week. We'll let
you all know when the section goes up.