The Museum houses one of the largest collections of Hymenoptera in the world, with over three million pinned specimens.
The collection is rich in type specimens and includes historical material from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, such as that collected by Charles Darwin and Henry Walter Bates, the Amazonian explorer.
The collection is actively growing, with recent collecting efforts focussed on supporting current research projects.
Recent collections include:
- Hymenoptera from Bolivia
- Hymenoptera from the Russian Far East
- Bees from South Africa
- Chalcidoidea from Costa Rica
- The Hedqvist collection, particularly rich in European Chalcidoidea
- William Kirby (1759-1850)
- Francis Walker (1809-1874)
- Edward Saunders (1848-1910)
- Marcus William Robert de Vere Graham (1915-1995)
- British Microgastrinae
- Frederick Smith (1805 - 1879)
- Rothschild, N. Charles (1877–1923)
- Rowland Turner (-1945)
- Friedrich (Fritz) Plaumann (1902 - 1994)
- Kenneth Mackinnon Guichard (1914-2002)
- Ian Gauld (1947-2009)
Country of origin
Countries/ areas mentioned: Bolivia, Russia, South Africa, Costa Rica, Europe, Britain, Australia, Brazil, North Africa.