Gil Macarrón et al., 2014: THE MOUNTING OF TWO BIRDS
INTRODUCTION
eagle had been there since the 50s of the XX
century. It had no associated information (only
The general objective of this study is to make a
the signature and date on the bottom of the
comprehensive comparative analysis of the
base) and was not inventoried as part of the
methods and products used in the preparation
funds
of
the
Complutense
University.
of two birds, stuffed in different historical
Therefore, the owner and provenance of the
periods (1891 and 1914). The specific intention
specimen had to be determined, i. e. if the
is to understand the nature of the materials
animal belonged to the Faculty of Fine Arts, the
used and the ways of working to know their
private workshop of the Benedito Brothers or to
aging and, therefore, to apply the most
MNCN-CSIC. Two years after the introduction of
appropriate treatments of conservation to the
graduate studies at UCM and remodeling of
pieces. One of the pieces, a golden eagle
spaces to adapt the faculty to new necessities,
belongs to the Faculty of Fine Arts of the UCM
14 additional pieces appeared. Then, we began
and the other, a pink flamingo, to MNCN-CSIC.
to search through the files of MNCN for the
output of a batch of birds destined for the
The relation between the Royal Cabinet
Faculty of Fine Arts, either as loans or
and MNCN Taxidermy Laboratory and the
donations (these were very frequent to other
Faculty of Fine Arts of the UCM
institutions and schools). Also, we proceeded to
inspect the invoices and documents in the
It is important to make an introduction to both
workshop of José Luis Benedito Bruño,
institutions, the Royal Cabinet and the Faculty,
taxidermist and heir of the family business, but
in order to determine the origin of one of the
unfortunately he died in March 2011. The
pieces studied, the golden eagle (Aquila
sudden death of José Luis Benedito made the
chrysaetos; Figure 1). Initially, we found the
consultation of the family archive impossible,
eagle in the office of a professor of the Faculty
which is thus still pending.
of Fine Arts who had just retired, Francisco
López Soldado, who remembered that the
Figure 1: Golden Eagle prepared by the Benedito brothers, 1914 (UCM).
76 Journal of Paleontological Techniques