Our Holdings

(more coming soon)

This page is still under development.  It is taking us a while to create specific content about our holdings.  We will update this page in the near future. 

Our holdings are estimated at about 3 million specimens.  We do not have a searchable catalog to our entire holdings, although we are working on one, which we will make available as each of the various arthropod groups are done.  Please contact us  or plan to visit if you are interested in finding particular taxon or specimen.    Below are some general descriptions to our holdings, especially our strengths, that may help you out until we have our catalog online.

General Description
The majority of our material is stored in our primary repository which houses (i) dry, pinned and pointed specimens (e.g., most insect groups), (ii) microscope slide material (mites, and small insects such as aphids, thrips, etc), and to a lesser degree (iii) papered/envelope material (dragonflies and butterflies).   In addition to these, we also maintain a wet collection of specimens preserved in ethanol, which includes aquatic insects, larvae, and non-insect terrestrial arthropods, such as spiders, millipedes, etc..

The oldest material in the collection dates back to the mid- to late-19th century, but the majority of our material was collected in the mid- to late-20th century.   We continue to accesson new material to the collection today, largely associated with active research projects and the specific interests of local entomologists who donate specimens to us.

Geographic Coverage

The vast majority of specimens in our collection were collected in the Pacific Northwest (loosely defined as: Oregon, Washington, British Columbia, western Idaho and northern California).  After this, holdings represent other the fauna with diminishing representation as proximity to the PNW falls off (eg., we have better holdings of western United States insects than of the eastern United States; and better holding of Central and South American holdings than of the Eurasian fauna.  Our least represented faunae are those of Africa the Middle East and Indo-Australian regions. 


Taxonomic Strengths

Coleoptera (beetles), Hemiptera (true bugs), Lepidoptera (moths & butterflies), Hymenoptera (bees & wasps) and Acari (mites) represent some of our most important holdings. However we also have reasonable collectios of Diptera (flies), Orthoptera (crickets and grasshoppers) and a formidable Aquatic Insect collection.   In addition to these - we have a small but important collection of regional terrestrial molluscs (snails & slugs).

Type material

We maintain a collection of primary and secondary types.  These represent a small percentage of the holotypes based on OSAC specimens and/or species described by researchers working at Oregon State University, as many were deposited at other institutions, notably the California Academy of Sciences or the Smithsonian Institution.  However, today in keeping with the other natural history repositories at Oregon State University, we generally require holotypes based on our specimens to be deposited here.