Entomology collections

Specimens from the entomology collection

Specimens from the Museum's Entomology collections 

Browse the oldest and most important entomology collection in the world with over 30 million insects.

Gathered over 300 years, these specimens are key to telling the history of collecting, the science of taxonomy and the human desire to understand the natural world.

Looking for a specimen?

The entomology collections are being digitised

Small orders

An eclectic collection of 24 orders of insects and their close relatives within Hexapoda.


The Museum's collection of fleas is large and of great historical importance.


Our Coleoptera collection is among the oldest and most important in the world, with approximately 22,000 drawers of specimens.


Our Lepidoptera collection contains approximately 12.5 million pinned specimens and 1 million papered specimens housed in 80,000 drawers.


Our Museum houses one of the largest collections of Hymenoptera in the world.


The Diptera collection is one of the world’s leading research collections, with more than 2.5 million specimens, including important type material.

Historical collections

The Banks and Sloane collections are the only two collections maintained separately within the entomology collections.

Collections on the move

Access to some collections will be affected as we prepare for the move to our new collections, science and digitisation centre.

Accessing the collections

Scientists and collections management specialists can visit the collections and borrow specimens for research.

Collections management

Our duty is to provide a safe and secure environment for all of our collections.