Museum of Zoology

Museum of Zoology

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  • The Finback whale skeleton, shown in the University of Cambridge's Museum of Zoology
    The Finback whale skeleton, shown in its home in the Whale Hall

The Museum of Zoology is home to a huge variety of recent and fossil animals, including collections made by great naturalists of the past. Its collections include rare and extinct animals, a great auk skin and treasures from Darwin's Beagle voyage.

The Museum houses a unique slice of the natural world in its collections, capturing diversity in animal life with more than two million specimens gathered over more than two centuries from all over the world.

The collections lie at the heart of everything the museum does. From telling the story of animal life through scientific research and cutting edge techniques to understand the origins and complexities of life on earth, to showing us how to detect species that are in peril and when to intervene to conserve them. The collections fill the Museum’s public galleries and thrill people of all ages and from all backgrounds. They enrich life in our local community by transporting people beyond their own lives and instilling a love of the natural world.

How you can help the work of the Museum

Give your time

Volunteers are vital to the full range of the Museum’s work, whether it’s providing a warm welcome to visitors, or getting hands-on with the specimens. Find out more.

Make a gift

  • £100 will help pay for a primary school class to engage with the Museum
  • £500 is the cost of conserving a specimen for future generations to study and admire
  • £1000 will help us make a trail around the museum, to showcase new themes in our research and tell untold stories about the animal kingdom
  • £5000 will help pay for one of our community programmes, such as our work with dementia patients, homeless people or those with special educational needs
  • £10000 is the typical cost of putting on one of our summer exhibitions

Next steps

You can make a gift online using a credit or debit card. Alternatively, to make a gift offline or to discuss other sponsorship opportunities, please contact Lisa Sneath by telephone: +44 (0)1223 336650 or by email: umzc@zoo.cam.ac.uk.

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This opportunity is part of

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Cambridge’s collections have multiple lives, embracing public and private histories, personal and scientific interest and the past and the present. They illuminate the wider activities, histories and environments of the people who made them and the worlds they represent. We draw upon our collections to conduct pioneering research. By investing in our collections and museums, our ambition is to deepen public understanding of cultures and peoples across the planet.
Montage of different zoology images
The Department of Zoology is home to a thriving community of scientists who share a deep interest in how animals develop, function, interact and evolve.