Princess Mako visits Brazilian zoology museum that's home to millions of specimens


Princess Mako, who began an official trip to Brazil last week, visited a zoology museum at the University of Sao Paulo on Tuesday that is home to more than 10 million specimens.

The first child of Prince Akishino and Princess Kiko, and the eldest grandchild of Emperor Akihito and Empress Michiko, the princess mainly viewed specimens of butterflies indigenous to Brazil and animals preserved using taxidermy.

The collection at the Museum of Zoology includes fish specimens that the Japanese Emperor donated to the university after his visit to Sao Paulo in 1978, when he was Crown Prince.

The princess showed interest in the specimens and asked questions, including about the differences between local and Japanese blowfish.

Princess Mako studied museology at the University of Leicester in the U.K., obtaining a master’s degree. She currently works as an affiliate researcher at the University of Tokyo’s University Museum.

The princess will later visit the northern Brazilian states of Amazonas and Para. In Manaus, the capital of Amazonas, she will attend a ceremony to mark the 110th anniversary of the arrival of the first group of Japanese immigrants in Brazil.

The princess will begin her journey home on Saturday.