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The Museum, part of the Department of Zoology in the University of Cambridge, is one of the leading international research centres for the study of Zoology. The collections, which total some 4 million specimens, are a treasure house of the amazing diversity of animal life on earth. Here you can trace the evolution of life on earth from earliest times to the present day and see the results of current research.

Completely new and redesigned exhibition galleries will display the story of the ‘Tree of Life’ from earliest times to the present, highlighting the rich diversity of the animal kingdom and the fantastic wealth of the Museum’s collections. All animal life will be there – from fossils showing the first foot with five digits to extinct species such as the Tasmanian Tiger and the Great Auk and from the Giant Sloth to a marine shell collected in Cook’s Strait in New Zealand and brought back from Cook’s second circumnavigation 1772–75. In addition to the new galleries, the project will include the building of new stores for our reserve collections which will provide better security and environmental conditions as well as, for the first time, public access. The project also includes the building of a new Discovery Space and Activity Room which will help us, not only to increase our visitor numbers and reach new audiences but which will significantly enhance our capacity for education and outreach. We are now on our way to our target of £5 million to fund the new Museum. If we are to succeed we must raise a further £3 million and we need your help.

Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species

Above: On the Origin of Species by Charles Darwin, published on 24 November 1859, is the keystone of the study of evolutionary biology and one of the most important scientific publications of the last 150 years. Its full title was On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life. Darwin's book introduced the scientific theory that populations evolve over the course of generations through a process of natural selection and that the diversity of life arose by common descent through a branching pattern of evolution. He included evidence that he had gathered on the Beagle expedition in the 1830s and subsequent findings from research, correspondence and experimentation. CAMBR ID GY O




he Museum of Zoology in Cambridge is a gem in a city full of wonderful museums. Among its amazing collections are a skeleton of a Dodo, the best example in the world of the extinct Great Auk and animals collected by Charles Darwin and by Alfred Russel Wallace, Darwin’s contemporary who also came up with the theory of evolution. As part of a total refurbishment of the building that houses the Museum, we are embarking on an ambitious new project to bring the diversity and wonder of the animal kingdom to life for the widest possible audience. With support from the Heritage Lottery Fund, work has begun to develop a totally new Museum of Zoology.


Preserving and sustaining animal diversity

…from so simple a beginning, endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.


A new Museum of Zoology


Zoology Museum, Cambridge  

Fund-raising brochure for the University Zoology Museum Cambridge

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