Diptera collections

The Natural History Museum's collections of Diptera contains approximately 2.5 million specimens.

The Museum holds collections of International and British Diptera that are stored separately.

International collections

The international collection holds important type material of Diptera, some dating back to the 18th century, most notably of taxa described by Walker, Bigot, Brunetti, Edwards and Austen. 

Parts of the world that are particularly well represented are the:

  • Europe (except Russia)
  • most of sub-Saharan Africa
  • the Seychelles
  • the Indian subcontinent
  • Malesia
  • Southern Argentina
  • Chile

British collections

20th century collections

The British Diptera Collection includes donations from important collectors of the 20th century such as:

  • F.W. Edwards
  • L. Parmenter
  • C.N. Colyer
  • O.W. Richards
  • E.A. Fonseca

A synoptic British reference collection can be examined in the Angela Marmont Centre for UK Biodiversity.

Haematopota pluvialis, horse fly
Diptera research

Learn more about current research at the Museum on forensic entomology, mosquitoes and non-biting midges.

Contact us

Entomology collections team

Contact the entomology collections team with scientific enquiries about the collections.

Glossina morsitans morsitans, savanna tsetse fly.

Discover more about the different groups of flies.