The U.S. National Entomological Collection is the world's largest accessible collection, with over 35 million specimens. The electronic records available here focus on type specimens as well as the general Odonata collections. Data for several taxonomic groups are indicated, at the end of detailed records, as reveiwed by staff of the Smithsonian or affiliates USDA Systematic Entomology Laboratory and Walter Reed Biosystematics Unit. Legacy data for several taxonomic groups are kept available while under review and will be udpdated upon completion. Data and images for all specimens should be considered provisional. We will be updating and adding records and images regularly.
Keyword searches on summary fields can be run from the Keyword Search tab above. Searches can be run against specific fields from the Search by Field tab. A custom presentation of Entomology Illustration Archive records is also available. If you do not know what to search for, try one of the three sample searches in the Quick Browse list below.
Search results are sorted by taxonomic group and limited to 5000 records. If you need to retrieve a larger record set, please contact the Department of Entomology.
See the Help tab to learn more about searching and then exploring your returned results (sorting, exporting, etc.).
||Selected imaged bee type specimens
||9100322 9100358 9100367 9100370 9100371 9168462 9168746 9169407 9170469 9170730 9171576 9171905 9172004 9172130 9172134 9172229 9172266 9172771 9172798 9172922 9172992 9173924 9174025 9174117 9174177 9174449 9174508 9175324 9175349 9175861 9175862 9175865 9175900 9175906 9176131 9176995 9178114 9178634 9178622 9205142 9208004 9170469 9312640
||Imaged Odonata type specimens
||9198878 9208064 9198879 9100437 9206185 9198864 9198865 9198867 9198868 9198869 9198841 9205855 9205856 9205858 9209159 9208434 9205730 9198920 9100308 9205956 9100310 9100311 9205221 9205222 9200146 9198910 9100115 9198911 9198912 9198913 9198914 9198915 9199043 9198916 9198917 9198918 9198919 9205854 9312631 9198886 9198844 9205860 9205861 9198831 9198873 9208063 9208065 9198874 9198871 9198875 9198908 9198909 9100429 9210979 9210980 9198866 9210978
||Selected Illustration Archive records
||9312875 9312879 9312904 9313080 9313135 9313347 9313851 9314014 9314128 9314707 9314752 9314801 9314850 9314863 9316136 9315132 9315117 9315111 9313007 9314963 9314928
Enter your keywords separated by spaces and click Search. Records that match your search terms will be returned.
- Using parentheses to clarify the logic, you can create complex queries with OR and NOT (here capital letters are required, otherwise they will be treated as keyword terms).
- You can also use double-quotes to specify terms that should be treated as one.
- Lastly, you can include the terms image(s) or type(s) to find records that have images or that are type specimens.
Note that searching for common (vernacular) names may not yield the expected results. Associating common names with specimen records is a work in progress.
Keyword search example: cicindela ("new mexico" OR chihuahua) type
Use the By Field search to find specimen data that match values in specific database fields. Enter a value or choose one from the dropdown lists.
- Click the Search button to initiate a search. Clear resets all fields.
- Some lists are linked, so for example, choosing a Country narrows the choices for Province/State/Territory, and District/County. Dropdown choices also narrow as you type, for example, typing coen in the Family field might narrow the choice to Coenagrionidae.
- Note that the Province/State dropdown is populated only after you have chosen a Country. You can type a Province/State without selecting a Country.
- Check Only Records with Images if you want to restrict the search to records with multimedia content.
- You will receive a warning when you enter invalid information in the text fields. For example, Catalog Numbers are composed strictly of letters and numbers; other characters will raise a warning.
The results of your searches can be displayed in Grid (a sortable, customizable table)
or Gallery View (best for reviewing images). Use the Switch button to cycle between these views.
- You can choose whether to display 5, 10, 20, 50, or 100 records at a time.
In Grid View:
- You can choose the columns to display from any column's dropdown menu (mouse into a column header and click the dropdown icon). Under Columns, click the name to display or hide the field (you do not need to click the checkbox specifically).
- You can drag a column header to change its order of appearance in the grid.
- You can also drag the edge of a column to make it wider or narrower.
- Click in the expansion () column to view the full record.
In Gallery View:
- Click the image to view the full record.
See Exporting Results for information on downloading results to, for example, Excel or Google Earth.
Open the full collection record by clicking the expansion button () in Grid View,
or anywhere within the image frame in Gallery View. Inverse expansion buttons () indicate records with multimedia (typically, images).
- In the Record window, metadata for the multimedia content is available when you mouseover the thumbnail.
- Clicking the thumbnail opens the content in your browser or other appropriate application.
- Record windows may be resized or moved within the browser window.
- You may have up to ten Record windows open at any one time.
Sort results in Grid View by clicking the column header (or by choosing Sort from the column's dropdown menu).
- Sort on multiple columns by consecutively sorting columns in reverse order. For example, to view results sorted by Country and Province/State, first sort by Province/State and then sort again by Country.
- For any column you can choose to sort in Ascending or Descending order.
Export all or selected results by clicking the Export Results as CSV button in the bottom toolbar in Grid,
or Gallery View.
- Select individual records for Export by checking the export selection box (along the left edge of the Grid View grid).
- Clear all selections with the Clear Selections button in the bottom toolbar.
- Results are exported as comma-separated-values, one record per line, which can be saved to disk or opened directly with applications such as Microsoft Excel.
You can also export all or selected results to a KML file for viewing with Google Earth or other KML viewers, by clicking the Export as KML button. This button is grayed when all or selected results lack latitude/longitude values.
To create a link to specific records at NMNH provide the appropriate unit and querystring to:
where UNIT is:
- anth, birds, botany, ento, fishes, herps, iz, mammals, ms, or paleo
and QUERYSTRING is (use a plus-sign to separate words):
- One or more CATALOG NUMBERS, e.g.
- One or more BARCODES, e.g.
- The NAME of a TYPE specimen, e.g.:
- The NAME of a specimen or object, e.g.:
- A By Field query supplying the NAME (qn) and/or FAMILY (fm) and/or TYPE STATUS (qt) of a specimen, and/or its COLLECTOR (co), the COLLECTION (cn) it is part of, the LIFE STAGE (ls), records with IMAGES ONLY (io), e.g.:
(Holotypes whose name includes Torre and Bartsch collected by Webb and part of the Henderson Collection)
- To open the Collections Search to a specific search tab, e.g.
Tabs are numbered left to right, beginning with zero.
- iz/?ti=1 (Invertebrate Zoology Keywords Search)
- mammals/?ti=3 (Mammals Whale Collection Search)
There are ways to speed up your queries (or slow them down!) and to find specific information.
- The more specific you make your queries the faster they will execute. Using more, rather than fewer, terms will very likely speed up your search.
- These following special characters modify the interpretation of search terms (use with as many other terms as possible to avoid slowing your search):
- * matches any number of characters, e.g. *pseudo*
- ? matches a single character, e.g. young?lus frank?
- ! negates the presence of a term, e.g. !new
- ~ matches all terms with the given stem, e.g. ~spear for spear, spears, spearing, etc.
- = match is case-sensitive, e.g. =Paris
- Query results are typically limited to 5000 records. Avoid general queries, when you can, that are likely to bring back very large numbers of records, e.g. searching for hymenoptera.
- Long running queries are automatically terminated, with no results returned.
Please use the Feedback page to report back any problems you find with the data, or with using these search pages.