Ornithology is one of the Florida Museum’s earliest formally recognized scientifically themed collections. It was the first to have a dedicated curator when Charles Doe donated his life’s work–the Doe Egg Collection–and joined the Museum under Thompson van Hyning in the early 1930s. The Ornithology Collection now houses over 110,000 bird specimens, from bones and skins to eggs and recordings.*

Exhibit Objects

Significant Collections

Bird skeleton collection

This collection of 28,000 specimens, representing about 3,100 species, is approximately the fifth-largest in the world in number of specimens and species, with major strengths in birds from Florida, the Caribbean islands, and the New World tropics.*

Bird skin collection

The bird skin collection contains about 25,000 specimens representing at least 2,300 species.* These are mostly study skins, but in recent years we have greatly increased the number of specimens with associated spread wings.

Bird egg collection

The egg collection, consisting of 13,000 sets representing 733 species, is 11th-largest in North America in number of sets and 15th-largest in number of species.* It represents about 90 percent of the species and subspecies of North American birds. Especially well-represented are sets of eggs from New England and Florida.

Bird sound collection

The bird sound collection consists of approximately 30,000 cataloged recordings representing about 3,000 species.* In number of species it is the second-largest such collection in the Western Hemisphere and perhaps third- or fourth-largest in the world.

*Collection numbers were accurate at the time the exhibit was on display in 2017. Please visit the collection website or collection database for updated holdings information.