Photo by Kent Loeffler
The CUIC pinned insect collection is housed in approximately 16,500 Cornell drawers held within a stable, climatically controlled 8210 ft2 (763 m2) facility located on the second floor of Comstock Hall on Cornell University's central campus. Our holdings are particularly strong in Lepidoptera, Coleoptera, Hymenoptera, Diptera and Hemiptera. The holdings of the aquatic orders Odonata, Ephemeroptera, and Plecoptera are also richly represented and of worldwide scope due to the efforts of Professor James G. Needham and his numerous students.
The CUIC is the repository for 2686 primary type specimens, and holds primary or secondary types representing 7397 species. Primary types are housed in a secure type room. We also have an alcohol collection of over 50,000 vials that are stored in a double-jar system with archival gaskets.
We have been constantly growing in size, with an average drawer count increasing by 6.9% per year. Such growth was focused on our move to new facilties in 1985, with an increase in our cabinets and drawers funded by the National Science Foundation. In addition, we have received generous donations from Cornell alumni; e.g. Lepidoptera from J.G. Franclemont, and Membracidae from Tom Wood. With additional space, we are better able to curate our unidentified specimens, and to organize specimens for consultation by entomologists.