Primary tabs

Focus: Invertebrates

Invertebrates houses and maintains collections of all invertebrate groups except insects, arachnids and myriapods.  The primary research focus has been on the phylum Mollusca.  

Focus: Invertebrates Collections


The collections currently exceeds 340,000 catalogued lots (= specimen series) with continuing growth. Research and collecting traditionally focused on the phylum Mollusca with more than 328,000 cataloged lots. Non-mollusk invertebrates are represented by ca. 14,500 cataloged lots with the Arthropoda (ca. 50%), Annelida (20 %), Echinodermata (8 %), Cnidaria (7%) and Porifera (5 %) best represented.

Invertebrates from Wood Falls

Primarily, this searchable dataset contains data from an experiment designed to document members of the wood fall fauna from the deep North Pacific Ocean, in which wood was experimentally deployed by the ROV's Jason and Tiburon in 2002, and recovered after 10 months (July 2003 by the ROV Jason II) and after 24 months (by the Deep Submergence Vehicle, Alvin). The deployments were made at Escanaba Trough, Gorda Ridge, Endeavour Segment, Axial Volcano and several sites on Cascadia Basin at depths of from 1550 to 3250 m.

Mollusk Collection

At present the Division of Invertebrates, which began in 1938 with a collection of 16,000 lots, manages more than 328,000 cataloged mollusk lots, with approximately 4.5 million specimens. Our molluscan collection now ranks among the top three or four in North America.

Non-Molluscan Invertebrate Collection

The Division of Invertebrates currently holds approximately 14,700 cataloged lots (= specimen series) of non-mollusk invertebrates. The best-represented groups among these are the Arthropoda (ca. 50%), Annelida (20 %), Echinodermata (8 %), Cnidaria (7%) and Porifera (5 %). The core of the holdings are collections acquired by The Field Museum from the 1893 Columbian Exposition. Additions to these collections have come via collecting efforts with primary focus on other groups and the deposit of voucher material.