Lawrence M. Witmer, PhD
Professor of Anatomy
Chang Professor of Paleontology

Dept. of Biomedical Sciences
Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine
Life Science Building, Rm 123
Ohio University
Athens, Ohio 45701 USA

Phone: 740 593 9489
Fax: 740 593 2400
Email: witmerL@ohio.edu

 

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Common Language Summary
The Visible Interactive Parrot.
This page presents our work on the 3D anatomical structure of the head and skull of the scarlet macaw, Ara macao. Macaws, like all parrots, are unique among birds in their intelligence and jaw anatomy (e.g., their remarkable cranial kinesis), which makes them of particular interest to members of WitmerLab. These resources are outgrowths of our more technical work and are intended to serve as STEM educational aids for K12 and undergraduate students, as well as researchers. Work on this project was done primarily by WitmerLab PhD student James Nassif. The featured specimen (OUVC 10633) is the dried skull of an adult scarlet macaw. The skull was CT-scanned with a voxel size of 90 m (0.090 mm) at the OUCT facility. Segmentation of anatomical structures was done using Avizo, 3D modeling was done using Maya, 3D PDFs were generated using Deep Exploration and Adobe Acrobat, and movies were made using QuickTime and Adobe Premiere. Other featured specimens include a hyacinth macaw, and more content will be added in the future. Funded by the National Science Foundation.
 

Check out our otherVisible Interactive Anatomy sites! 

Download the CT scan data in DICOM format, as well as STLs for 3D printing at MorphoSource.org

Sketchfab animations

Scarlet Macaw endocast - OUVC 10633 by WitmerLab at Ohio University on Sketchfab

Scarlet Macaw skull - OUVC 10633 by WitmerLab at Ohio University on Sketchfab

3D PDFs Videos
3D PDFs allow anyone with even the free Acrobat Reader to interactively manipulate the 3D models that we generate with powerful software like Avizo. The skull and individual bones can be spun around, isolated, made transparent, hidden, etc. The files can even be saved to your local computer. We provide each 3D PDF in different resolutions and files sizes to match your interest and the power of your computer. View our mini-tutorial.
NOTE: Bugs in many browsers prevent them from running 3D PDFs in a browser window, so please save it to your system and then launch it.
 

3D PDF of the skull of an adult scarlet macaw (Ara macao, OUVC 10633) with soft tissues such as the brain endocast, inner ear labyrinth, blood vessels, and nerves.
Download a 71 MB 3D PDF LARGEST
Download a 36 MB 3D PDF LARGE
Download a 14 MB 3D PDF MEDIUM
Download a 7 MB 3D PDF SMALL

Download a 4.5 MB 3D PDF SMALLEST
 

3D PDF of the skull of an adult scarlet macaw (Ara macao, OUVC 10633) with each bony section as a separate colored object.
Download a 41 MB 3D PDF LARGEST
Download a 23 MB 3D PDF LARGE
Download a 14 MB 3D PDF MEDIUM
Download a 8 MB 3D PDF SMALL

Download a 4 MB 3D PDF SMALLEST
 
 
Labeled animation of skull, brain endocast, and inner ear. Animation of the skull of an adult scarlet macaw (Ara macao, OUVC 10633) labeled to show the endocast of the brain cavity, labyrinth of the inner ear, and other soft tissues. Work on this project was done primarily by WitmerLab PhD student James Nassif. The skull was CT-scanned with a voxel size of 90 m (0.090 mm) at the OUCT facility. Digital extraction of anatomical structures was done using Avizo; 3D modeling was done using Maya; 3D PDFs were generated using Maya, Deep Exploration, and Adobe Acrobat; and movies were made using Avizo, Maya, and Adobe Premiere.
Download a 30 MB MP4 movie (HD: 1920x1080)
Download a 14 MB MP4 movie (1280x720)
Download a 9 MB MP4 movie (853x480)
Download a 4 MB MP4 movie (640x360)
 
 

Labeled skull animation. Animation of the skull of an adult scarlet macaw (Ara macao, OUVC 10633) labeled to show the individual bones of the skull. In this mature individual, many of the bones are fused, and the individual components reflect functional units associated with the cranial kinesis mechanism. Work on this project was done primarily by WitmerLab PhD student James Nassif. The skull was CT-scanned with a voxel size of 90 m (0.090 mm) at the OUCT facility. Digital extraction of anatomical structures was done using Avizo; 3D modeling was done using Maya; 3D PDFs were generated using Maya, Deep Exploration, and Adobe Acrobat; and movies were made using Avizo, Maya, and Adobe Premiere.
Download a 19 MB MP4 movie (HD: 1920x1080)
Download a 9 MB MP4 movie (1280x720)
Download a 5 MB MP4 movie (853x480)
Download a 2.5 MB mp4 MP4 movie (640x360)

 

Cranial kinesis in a hyacinth macaw. Demonstration of cranial kinesis in a hyacinth macaw, the largest flying parrot. WitmerLab doctoral student James Nassif dissected this specimen (OUVC 10883), and it was then skeletonized by our dermestid beetle colony. The video was made immediately after the skull came out of the disinfecting hydrogen-peroxide/ammonia bath, while the skull joints were still flexible. The amount of prokinesis is probably somewhat exaggerated compared to in life, but parrots indeed have extreme cranial kinesis. 
Download a 72 MB QuickTime movie (HD: 1920x1080)

 

Witmer is responsible for the content of the website. Content provided here is for educational and research purposes only, and may not be used for any commercial purpose without the permission of L. M. Witmer and other relevant parties.

This project was funded by grants from the National Science Foundation.

  Ohio University
Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine
Irvine Hall, Athens, Ohio 45701
740-593-2530 740-597-2778 fax
 

Last updated: 10/25/2016