The birds of American Animals
It's not hard to imagine why a group of teenagers might attempt to steal John James Audubon's book The Birds of America, a true story told in the film American Animals.
Published 1827-1838, it's considered one of the great natural history books in status, size and value.
The iconic illustrations - of which there are 435 colour plates, bound into four volumes - are double elephant folio size, which is about 90 by 67 centimetres.
Elephant by name, elephant by nature, it's also the heaviest book in the Museum's library, weighing in at a whopping 25 kilograms.
Six of Audubon's striking prints are on display in the Museum's Birds gallery. If you've seen the film, you'll immediately recognise the pink plumage of the greater flamingo alongside one of the most admired plates from the book - seven feeding Carolina parakeets, a species which is now extinct.
All of the birds are shown displaying characteristic behaviour in a natural setting - an uncommon way of illustrating birds in works of science in the early nineteenth century. The standard approach was to paint stuffed specimens mounted on a stump.
You can look at (but can't touch) one of the original engraved plates from The Birds of America in the Treasures gallery above Hintze Hall.
A resized digital edition of Audubon's masterpiece has been created by disbinding one of two original sets held at the Museum and photographing it using the latest digital technology. It is available to purchase on iTunes.
Unframed print of a sketch by Audubon of an American flamingo bending near water.
Unframed print of a sketch by Audubon of an American white pelican perching on a riverbank.
Unframed print of a sketch by Audubon of parakeets perched together on branches.
Unframed print of a sketch by Audubon of two snowy owls watching for prey.
An elegant, illustrated book on the glorious birds of America.