Ornithology - Birds

The collection comprises approximately 200,000 preparations, covering 90 percent of 10,000 recent bird species. The oldest preparations date back to the late 18th century.

The entire collection comprises:
• 140,000 feathered skins and 10,000 mounted pieces
• 7,000 skeletons or partial skeletons
• 4,000 alcohol preparations
• 40,000 eggs
• 1.500 nests

The collection is currently housed in four halls with a surface of approximately 1,200 square meters. More than 45,000 have been digitally recorded. The data are available on demand.

Types of approximately 3,000 taxa make this collection particularly rich in types. Around a thousand of them have been digitally recorded and can be viewed under GBIF-Deutschland (http://www.biologie.uni-ulm.de/cgi-bin/portal/portal.pl?lang=d&pr=gbif-v1).

The bird collection of the Museum began when the Zoological Museum and the University of Berlin were founded in 1810. The oldest preparations are over two hundred years old. The foundation stock came from the Royal Art Chamber and the Count of Hoffmannsegg's collection. Over 200 preparations of the period have been preserved. The history of the collection was shaped in particular by the German curators and ornithologists par excellence J. L. Cabanis, A. Reichenow and E. Stresemann.

A substantial specialist library is part of the collection, taking up 500 meters of shelf space. It contains ornithological books and reviews. It was built up mainly by E. Stresemann. Its historic contents make it particularly valuable. The library of the Deutsche Ornithologen-Gesellschaft (DO-G, German Society of Ornithologists) is also managed by our librarians (http://www.do-g.de/).

The collection and libraries of the Aves Department and the Deutsche Ornithologen-Gesellschaft (German Society of Ornithologists) can be viewed by appointment. Several hundred visitors are admitted every year.

Last update: 20.11.2013