The collection activities of the Zoological Museum focus mainly on the northern Finnish species. In addition to the museum's own collection activities (invertebrates), the collections are augmented by private individuals and authorities by delivering dead animals to the museum.
The museum's collections are an essential resource in the development of DNA tags for species. The museum has recently promoted the digitization of collections and other storage and use of historical information in research.
More than 50,000 samples have been deposited in vertebrate animal research collections. Mammals account for more than 80% of vertebrate samples. Bird samples are abundant, especially from birds of prey and, for example, about 600 swans.
A representative reference series has been compiled for the museum to determine the bones of vertebrates. It provides an excellent reference library for ecological, paleontological and archaeological research.
The museum's bird egg collection consists of about 3,000 clutches. Egg collecting was an important form of bird hobby in the early 20th century, and the collection was mostly collected by Einari Merikallio and Wäinö Wall in 1900-1950.
There are an estimated half a million individuals in the invertebrate research collection, and these, when pinned and preserved in fluid, form excellent defined reference data for the northern region. Of invertebrates, the collection of butterflies and beetles is comprehensive and representative, and the collections include the individuals of several species' types, i.e. the individuals from which the species has been identified.
For the study of animal species knowledge, the museum has compiled study collections of both vertebrates and invertebrates. The study collections are in the premises of the Ecology and Genetics Research Unit and in the University's J-corridor.
The collections are available to both researchers and students. Contact the staff for more information on the collections.