Wet Specimen Care

Caring for your Wet Specimen

Our wet specimen items are all preserved with formalin, and are stored in 70% Isopropyl alcohol. We recommend only using 70% Isopropyl as 50% can be too weak and 90% can be too corrosive.

  • Always store your specimens away from sources of heat, like fire, open flames, direct sunlight, a radiator, etc. Alcohol and formalin are highly flammable so don’t store them near a stove, fireplace, don’t smoke around them, etc. Use common sense to decide where in your home your specimens will be safest. 
  • Sunlight will degrade the specimens.
  • Store away from pets and children.
  • Never EVER eat, drink, or allow anyone else (human or animal) to eat or drink any part of your specimen, including any of the liquid solutions. If your jar breaks, use gloves to carefully pick up the large glass and specimen and dispose of it immediately. Absorb any liquid with cat litter or sawdust (along with sweeping up the leftover glass) and put it all in the trash. Make sure to wash the floor afterwards
  • Over time the alcohol in specimens can evaporate. Make sure your specimens remain fully submerged in the alcohol. More 70% isopropyl alcohol can be added to compensate for evaporation. Color of the alcohol can also change over time. Specimen alcohol can be poured out and replaced. We recommend wearing gloves if you are opening your specimen jar for anything. 

If you would prefer not to refill or replace alcohol yourself, we invite you to bring it into the store and we will do it for you! Small fees may apply for refilling or replacing alcohol. 

Please feel free to contact us if you have any questions about Wet Specimens.