Fetal Pig Dissections Offer Human Anatomy Model


Sarah Orders, Sports Editor

Mr. Gillibert’s AP Biology tackled anatomy with hands-on dissections of fetal pigs. According to Gillibert, the purpose of this assignment was to see what the parts of the human body actually look like, since the pigs have similar anatomical structures to people.

Students either worked in groups of two or alone, as Gillibert wanted them to have an intimate experience working with the pigs. He believes that once the students explored the abdomen and chest cavity the dissection would become more exciting because the parts look more familiar.

Senior Kathryn Stabler found the dissections fascinating, but also somewhat sad and gross. “It’s not as bad as people think, you just have to think of it as not a baby pig,” said Stabler.  Viewing the baby pigs dispassionatley was difficult since a majority of the students named their pigs, making it harder to dissect without feeling sorry for them. Stabler named her female pig Lucy.

Junior Meera Madra also participated in the dissections with her male pig, which she named Jamal. According to Madra, they provided great learning opportunities. “It gives us a good hands-on opportunity, and it may interest people in the field of surgery,” she explained.

The dissections started on May 22, with the examination of the chest in order view the larynx, trachea, thyroid and thymus glands. The dissections will continue until the start of finals. Gillibert has been doing this project for about 10 years, ever since he began teaching AP Biology.