Dr. Wilmot Thornton started the ASU Collection of Mammals in the mid-1960s. Dr. Mark Engstrom, now curator at the Royal Ontario Museum, served as curator from 1982-88. During that time, the collection expanded dramatically and was moved to its current location in Room 109 of the Cavness Science Building.
In 1988, Dr. Robert Dowler assumed the duties of curator and remains in that position today. Under his direction, the collection has reached nearly 20,000 specimens.
The Collection of Mammals is accredited by the American Society of Mammalogists, Systematic Collections Committee. Almost half of the collection is of species from Texas. However, significant holdings are also represented from Mexico (3,600 specimens), Guyana (200) and the Galapagos Islands, seaward of Ecuador (300).
Recent field studies in Sulawesi, Indonesia and several U.S. states, including Arizona, New Mexico, Montana and Oregon, have added specimens to the collection.
Data for specimens in the Collection of Mammals is entered in Arctos. Selected information from the database is searchable through our web interface. Although every effort is made to ensure the accuracy of catalogue information, researchers should verify information before use or publication. For additional information not provided through the searchable web interface, or if you have questions, please contact the curator.
Use and Loan of Specimens
The collection is available for study by all qualified visitors who set up an appointment or request a loan.
Loan requests to the curator must be in writing from the researcher borrowing the material. Loans are made for a period of six months with extensions possible by written request. Destructive sampling requests will be considered by the curator.