Holdings & Databases


Essig Museum staff and volunteers have been building several databases, including a list of species and specimens in the collection. Digitizing activities were greatly amplified by the CalBug project (2010-2015) funded by the National Science Foundation. For many specimens, labels were imaged first – these images are used to transcribe collecting data. Not all images have been transcribed yet, but images can be searched by genus and species names.

Although we strive to avoid typos and keep names up-to-date, there are likely to be some mistakes. If you find errors (typos, synonyms, changes in higher taxonomy), please contact the collections manager ( See the full list of available digital resources.

Species List– continuously updated list of species in the Essig Museum collection

Simple Specimen Search – search for a particular species or catalog number

Advanced Specimen Search – search for orders, families, locations, dates, collectors, etc.

Specimen Label Image Search – images of specimen labels that have not yet been databased

Browse by Higher Taxonomy – drill down search by selecting Order > Family > Genus


Aquatic Macroinvertebrates – The laboratory of Vince Resh maintains several long-term aquatic sampling data sets. These data sets have been examined in many of Dr. Resh’s publications and are now freely available. Information on each data set, including the list of relevant publications, is provided in downloadable Excel files.

CalBug – California Arthropod Database representing the eight major collections in California

California Counties Moth Database – County records from vouchered specimens

CalPhotos – Photographs of arthropods and other organisms

Lepidoptera of French Polynesia – Photographs, biology, and distribution of moths and butterflies

Moorea BioCode Database – All taxon inventory of the island of Moorea, French Polynesia