Marine Invertebrates

The collection comprises approximately 47,000 catalogued items ('lots'), covering twelve invertebrate groups including many type specimens. The following taxa are represented in the collection:

  • Sponges (Porifera), approx. 13,000 (= 'lots')
  • Cnidarians (Cnidaria), approx. 15,000
  • Comb jellies (Ctenophora), approx. 500
  • Entoprocts (Kamptozoa), approx. 20
  • Horseshoe worms (Phoronida), 10
  • Moss animals (Bryozoa), approx. 3,000
  • Brachiopods (Brachiopoda), approx. 2,500
  • Echinoderms (Echinodermata), approx. 7,500
  • Acorn worms (Enteropneusta), approx. 30
  • Pterobranchia, 5
  • Tunicates (Tunicata), approx. 4,000
  • Lancelets (Acrania), approx. 50

Access to the collection
The collection is arranged in systematic order and contains also the fresh water dwelling species of Porifera, Cnidaria and Bryozoa. Records are well documented as both hand written catalogues and electronic databases. Approximately 70 percent of all items are preserved in alcohol. Additionally, the collection holds substantial amounts of dry invertebrate skeletons (e.g. sponges, corals, echinoderms, brachiopod shells) and several drawers with microslides and SEM preps.

A large proportion of the collection originates from expeditions conducted during the 19th and early 20th century, including

  • "Rurik" (1815-1817), global circumnavigation, mainly Pacific Ocean
  • "Tethis" (1860-1862), East Asia
  • "Gazelle" (1874-1876), global circumnavigation
  • "Pola" (1895-1898), Red Sea
  • "Valdivia" (1898-1899), German Deep Sea Expedition
  • "Gauss" (1901-1903), German South Polar Expedition

This is complemented by important collections from e.g. Hemprich & Ehrenberg, Klunzinger, Döderlein, Römer and Schaudinn (Fauna Arctica),
Kükenthal & Hartmeyer (West India Expedition), Kühlmann.

Last update: 21.09.2011