Museum of Comparative Zoology, Harvard University (MCZ)

The Museum of Comparative Zoology was founded in 1859 on the concept that collections are an integral and fundamental component of zoological research and teaching. This more than 150-year-old commitment remains a strong and proud tradition for the MCZ.

The present-day MCZ contains over 21-million specimens in ten research collections which comprise one of the world's richest and most varied resources for studying the diversity of life. The museum serves as the primary repository for zoological specimens collected by past and present Harvard faculty-curators, staff and associates conducting research around the world.

As a premier university museum and research institution, the specimens and their related data are available to researchers of the scientific and museum community.
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Collection Type: Preserved Specimens
Management: Data snapshot of local collection database
Last Update: 5 December 2017
IPT / DwC-A Source:
Digital Metadata: EML File
Collection Statistics
  • 560,205 specimen records
  • 197,761 (35%) georeferenced
  • 147,402 (26%) with images
  • 242,008 (43%) identified to species
  • 1,975 families
  • 7,995 genera
  • 25,174 species
  • 25,973 total taxa (including subsp. and var.)
Extra Statistics
This project made possible by National Science Foundation Award EF 1207371