SwissCollNet s’engage à améliorer l'accessibilité de ses collections. Une vision commune et une stratégie à long terme favoriseront l'utilisation des collections d'histoire naturelle pour la recherche, l'enseignement et la société.

Image : OscarLoRo, stock.adobe.com

Zoology - Vertebrates

Conservation préventive et révision de l'inventaire de la collection de vertébrés.
Louise Robert (Musée d'Histoire naturelle de Neuchâtel)

La collection de vertébrés du Muséum d’histoire naturelle de Neuchâtel (MHNN) trouve son origine il y a plus de 200 ans. Depuis, elle n’a cessé de s’enrichir pour atteindre aujourd’hui plus de 21'600 exemplaires. Elle contient de nombreux spécimens à haute valeur scientifique et historique.

Les conditions de stockage avec notamment de trop grandes variations climatiques, des attaques d’insectes ravageurs récurrentes et l’accumulation de poussière ont mis à mal ces spécimens. Un travail de dépoussiérage, de désinsectisation, de restauration d’urgence (consolidation, dégraissage, collage) et de conditionnement va être mené. Les collections préservées en alcool (collections en fluide) vont également être révisées en appliquant les protocoles en vigueurs dans le domaine.

Le récolement de la collection complète va être réalisé afin de vérifier la présence du spécimen, sa localisation et également de remettre à jour son taxon et son statut de conservation (UICN).

Tous les spécimens vont être photographiés en haute résolution et intégrés dans la base de données. A terme cela permettra l’amélioration de la visibilité de la collection auprès de la communauté internationale.

21st century curation - best practices for expansion and providing accessibility of vertebrate collections
Stefan T. Hertwig (Natural History Museum Bern), Lukas Rüber (Natural History Museum Bern), Manuel Schweizer (Natural History Museum Bern)

Natural history collections and databases document the diversity of life on Earth and serve as an important basis for our understanding of evolution. Correctly dated and preserved museum specimens are therefore indispensable sources of data for biological and applied research. Consequently, natural history museums must constantly expand their collections in a targeted manner based on scientific standards. In this context, the conservation of objects is a time-consuming and cost-intensive process, which is, however, a prerequisite for any subsequent scientific use of natural history collections. The project at the Museum of Natural History Bern, funded by SwissCollNet, will lead to a significant expansion and better cataloguing of the vertebrate collection. A total of 3000 newly collected specimens as well as 350 historical skeletons in poor condition will be prepared, sampled and digitally recorded for the collection. The newly collected data will be made available to superordinate databases and thus made accessible to researchers all over the world. In this model project, standards for the processing of newly collected material but also for the preservation of historical objects in vertebrate collections in general will be further developed. In the context of a workshop, best practices in extension and curation of vertebrate collections will be shared with other institutions as a contribution to maintaining high standards in Switzerland's natural history collections.

Inventory/Digitization of exotic vertebrates in the collection of the Natural History Museum of Solothurn
Andreas Schäfer (Natural History Museum Solothurn)

The main objective of this project is the re-determination, the re-labelling and the digitization of all exotic animals in our vertebrate collection. As a small museum we need some help by specialists (coming from other institutions) for the re-determination of the exotic animals. All other parts of the project we can do ourselves.

The project is important because it makes an essential part of our collection accessible to researchers and scientists. A digitization/inventory also is important for long term preservation. Only if we can guarantee a link between object and data we can conserve its scientific value. By rising the collection standard, the collection becomes important for national and international databases.