Texas Tech University

Invertebrate Zoology Collection


The Invertebrate Zoology Collection component of the logo of the Natural Science Research Laboratory: the sillhouette of a weevil over yellow backgroundThe Invertebrate Zoology Collection is international in scope with an emphasis on arthropods from semi-arid and arid lands, especially from North America. It is probably the third largest of the 12 prominent collections in the state of Texas.  

The collection consists primarily of insects (including an extensive collection of ants), medical/veterinary specimens (endo- and ecto-parasites), and arachnids. Specimens are preserved following standard museum practices by various methods: dry (pinned, point-mounted, enveloped), in ethanol, in buffered formalin, on microscope slides, on SEM stubs, and cooled to -20 or -80°C. The pinned collection contains over 3,200 genera and 7,500 identified species. At least three million specimens are retained as sealed mixed-bulk specimens in ethanol.

The database containing specimen data and photographs is accessible online via the ecdysis portal and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF).

Dr. Jennifer Girón is the Curator of the Invertebrate Zoology Collection. For inquiries, please contact her at Jennifer.Giron@ttu.edu.

Estimated total about 4.6 million specimens including:

Cabinet of invertebrates

  • Pinned Insects
  • Arachnids in ethanol
  • Microscope slides (medical/veterinary importance and mites)
  • Bulk samples

A few examples of fossil and sub-fossil invertebrates are stored in this collection. Additional fossil material is handled by the Paleontology Division of the Museum. There are currently slightly more than 800 type specimens (mostly paratypes) in the collection. The collection is actively interacting with other departments at Texas Tech University, as well as with other research institutions.

Watch a talk by Dr. Jennifer Girón about the Invertebrate Zoology Collection at the Department of Biological Sciences Seminar Series in October 2022. 

Natural Science Research Laboratory