Beetles (Coleoptera) collection

Beetles (Coleoptera) collection

A pinned collection of around 103,000 specimens. Including two of the most comprehensive privately assembled collections of the 20th century (C. MacKechnie Jarvis and B.S. Williams).

World Museum’s beetle collection numbers around 130,000 specimens, representing ca. 90% of British species. The British collection is currently being re-curated and organised according to the latest checklist. Most British material apart from some from MacKechnie-Jarvis, Cope and Kidd is incorporated into the main reference collection. Notable collections include:

J.W. Ellis (1857-1916) 12,000 British beetles, mainly from North West England. Ellis wrote the Coleopterous Fauna of the Liverpool District in 1889. There is little data on his specimens but his notebooks contain important locality information.
M.L. Luff 3,000 carabid larvae in spirit used to write keys to immature stages.
C. MacKechnie-Jarvis (1907-2009) A comprehensive mainly British beetle collection of ca. 40,000 specimens with extensive archive material. It contains important historic material from S.R. Ashby and W. West together with vouchers for many extremely rare British species. Three drawers of Scillonian Island beetles and two drawers of Shetland Island beetles are also noteworthy.
R. Wilding (1858-1949) 10,000 specimens including historically interesting records for species subsequently lost from degraded sites such as Wallasey and Crosby sand dunes.
B.S. Williams (1891-1941) 20,000 immaculate specimens, mainly assembled between 1909 and 1914. Including some type material.
L.N. Kidd (1920-2013) 5,000 specimens, predominantly from East Lancashire, collected in the 1950s and 1960s.
J.E. Cope A small collection of local, mainly Cheshire specimens with accompanying card index – mainly housed in matchboxes!
MAFF economic insect collection ca. 2,000 beetle specimens assembled to assist MAFF scientists with their pest identification services.
W. Conney (?-1993) 1,000 specimens mainly from North West England.
J. Thomas (1938-2018) ca. 6,500 specimens, mainly from North Lancashire and Cumbria.

Collections lost in the war 

W.E. Sharp (1856-1919) 20,000 specimens collected between 1856 and 1919 formed the basis of the only Lancashire and Cheshire checklist. Fortunately, his three volume Catalogue of the British Coleoptera in my collection with notes thereon hassurvived.

W.J. Fordham (1882-1922) Beetles mainly collected from Yorkshire and probably including a number of syntypes and paratypes. Other insects collected by Fordham are still present in our collection.

World collections 

F. Chevrier 5,000 European specimens assembled in the early 1800’s and formerly owned by the Liverpool Royal Institution. Still housed in its original cabinet and with a catalogue and accompanying notebook. This is a very important source of specimens from contemporary taxonomists from which lectotypes have been erected.

Ca. 5,000 large and colourful ‘showy’ specimens. 

Collections are available Monday - Friday by prior appointment with Tony Hunter:

Telephone: 0151 478 4106