The collection consists of more than 850,000 specimens and 3,006 types (holo-, para- and lectotypes). About 25 monographs and more than 600 publications are based on this collection. The material has been collected during the past 50 years by professional entomologists and has been deposited from private collections (P. Lackschewitz, W. Petersen, F. Sintenis, J. Miländer, R. Suurpere, R. Sülla)
Coleoptera. The collection of beetles consists of two main parts: a joint collection of the Institute (ca 35,000 specimens) collected largely from Estonia and a private collection of J. Miländer (1900-1992) with 33,971 specimens. The latter comprise a general collection (19,800 specimens) and the material gathered fom Hiiumaa Island.
Lepidoptera.A significant part of the collection is formed of the personal collection of W. Petersen (1857-1933) containing both Micro- and Macrolepidoptera from various parts of the Palearctic region (about 55.000 specimens, holotypes of 6 taxa and 15 paratypes). Owing to the historical value, the collection is preserved in its original form.
The personal collection compiled by the amateur lepidopterist R. Suurpere, (12,000 macrolepidopteran specimens) and by R. Sülla (4,300 specimens) comprises exclusively Estonian material.
The main collection of the Estonian Macrolepidoptera comprises 200,000 mounted and labelled specimens and about 150,000 specimens of unmounted material. Traditionally the butterflies are the most closely investgated insect group. The checklist of Estonian lepidoptera comprises ca 2300 species.
The butterfly collection also contains unique material from insufficiently known regions of the former Soviet Union (the Russian Far East from Kamchatka to Primorye, Siberia, Central Asia, Transcaucasus, etc.) as well as material from Neotropic and Australotropic regions. The collection includes 76 holotypes, 8 lectotype and 463 paratypes.
Diptera. The main part of the collection (ca 140 000) is compiled by K. Elberg and it comprises material from all regions of the former Soviet Union. There is also a collection of Sciaroidae and some material gathered by F. Sintenis from Estonia. A large part of the material is determined by leading specialists (R.H.L. Disney, J. Rohacek, L. Papp, V. Gorodkov, E. Nartshuk etc.). The diptera collection includes 19 holotypes, 1 lectotypes, 143 paratypes and 3 allotypes.
Hemiptera. The material was collected by J. Vilbaste (1924 - 1985) and G. Flor (1829-1883). The collection of Homoptera (Auchenorrhyncha) by J.Vilbaste comprises the material from the Altai, Touva, Primorye, Kamtchatka and Sakhalin regions and has served as a basis for faunistic monographs (the manuscript about Sakhalin remained unpublished). A total of 173 holotypes and 2010 paratypes are preserved in this collection, most of them representing the species described by J. Vilbaste himself, a lesser fraction being obtained via exchange.
The systematic collection of spiders (ca 41,000 specimens), compiled by A. Vilbaste (1923-2010), and of ants (ca 80 000 specimens), compiled by V. Maavara (1928 – 1999), represent all species found in the Estonian territory.
Smaller collection of nematodes compiled by E. Krall (1931-2009) comprises 74 type specimens.
From IZBE ca 105 000 specimen are linked with Estonian eBiodiversity ( http://elurikkus.ut.ee/index.php?lang=eng) database
: Olavi Kurina (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Address: Entomological Collection,
Institute of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
Kreutzwaldi 5, 51014 Tartu, Estonia.