old & precious

Over the centuries, all new additions to the NHM Vienna’s bird collection have been documented in detail by hand. These written records are today an invaluable source of information. For example, records for the year 1813 show that the museum received eight new bird species, among them the European bee-eater and the blue rock thrush. A total of 14 individual bird specimens were added to the NHM’s collection in 1813. They were collected by Johann Natterer during a trip to Italy in 1812, before his famous travels in Brazil. On the bottom right you can see the signature of “Josef Natterer jun.”, who worked as a curator at the NHM and was responsible for recording new additions. The two Natterers were sons of Josef Natterer senior, whose collection of stuffed birds was acquired by Emperor Franz II (I.) in 1793 as the foundation for the NHM Vienna’s modern bird collection.

© NHM Wien, Hans-Martin Berg