Useful Tips

  • To begin searching the entire Zoology Collections Database click on the “Start Searching” button. 
  • Basic and Advanced search fields ARE case sensitive. For example, searching for Type Status "Holotype" vs "holotype" will not return the same records. (We are cleaning our data as quickly as we can!) 
  • The Key word search can be used to search all available fields.  This search is a "contains" search and will find that value if it is contained in any field.
  • Apply filters on the left to restrict the records in your search.  For instance search for all Fishes holdings from Illinois by applying the Fishes filter and search State: Illinois.
  1. Filtering by Country - the verbatim label country is used. In some cases (e.g. Amphibians and Reptiles) a standardised ISO country name is also diaplyed on the specimen detail page.
  • Clicking between pages (List, Table, Media) will clear your search terms, but keep any applied filters.
  • The Media view filters records to only those with multimedia associated.
  • Specific search fields can be found under Basic and Advanced search options.  These searches are "equal to" searches and will only find exact, case-sensitive matches in those specific fields (e.g. Carditopsis smithii (Dall, 1896)).
  • In the specific search field Genus, make sure to capitalize search terms.  In Species (specific epithet), make sure to use lower case.
  • The specific search field Prep Type contains the following values (alc; tiss; asr; brain; carc; cran; end; head; man; mounted; othr; skel; skin(r); trachea; wing; skin; skin(f); skull) and any combination of those values separated by a comma only (e.g. skel,trachea).
  • The specific search field Preservation contains preservation information (e.g. 70% EtOH; 5% Formalin > 70% EtOH; 95% EtOH; Bouin's > 70% EtOH; Formalin > 70% EtOH).
  • The Catalog Subset field contains the following values for each catalog listed:
  1. Amphibian and Reptiles: Slide, Specimen
  2. Birds: Egg, Specimen
  3. Insects: Arachnida; Bat Flies; Bulk Samples; Chilopoda; Coleoptera; Diplopoda; Diptera;Formicidae; Lepidoptera; Louse; Small Orders
  4. Invertebrates: Molluscan; Non-Molluscan
  More Specimen Information
  • Additional collection specific specimen databases and searches can be found under the "Collections Homepage" tab.
  • Information about individual collections datasets can be found under "Database Information" tab on the site home page
  • If you need to contact a collections manager with a query about a record found on this site. Please state the Catalog number and the record IRN in any communications.
  • There are two options for downloading a csv of selected data available on buttons on the bottom right of the page. The simple download gives you a general overview of each specimen; the extended download has more fields.
  • You can currentlyONLY download less than 4000 records at a time. For larger downloads see the Field Museum IPT site, our Vertnet Institution data page or our GBIF provider page. Please note that fields available here may NOT be available elsewhere.
  • The "Expanded" download includes measurement data in a pair of fields "Measurement"&"Measurement Value". Values in these fields are separated by the pipe | symbol and can be extracted to separate columns in any spreadsheet or database software. For example:

Measurement="skull | Weight | Fat | Tissue | Molt | Gonads | Stomach Contents  | Iris Color | Upper Mandible Color | Lower Mandible Color | Tarsus Color | Tarsus Color" 

Measurement Value="os | 209 |  |  |  | TE |  | orange-yellow | blue-black horn | blue-black horn | deep yellow"

How to parse to separate columns...