All in the numbers

A newly discovered animal or plant species is classified by scientists based on its type specimen. In the case of groups with only a short time between generations such as insects, this method reaches its limits.  For example, ladybirds can have a very different appearance – both as far as color of their forewing is concerned and also their markings. This “original tray” kept by the collector Ernst Grundmann,  includes exclusively samples of Anatis ocellata, the largest species of European ladybird. It represents only a tiny portion of the entire collection; by far the larger part is stored in the underground storage. On display in Hall 24.

© NHM Wien, Lois Lammerhuber