University of Nebraska State Museum Mammals Collection

Latest version published by University of Nebraska State Museum on Feb 24, 2021 University of Nebraska State Museum

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Data as a DwC-A file download 21,440 records in English (2 MB) - Update frequency: unknown
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The first concerted effort to collect mammal specimens for research purposes was instigated by Myron Swenk at the early part of the 20th century. Terry A. Vaughan was a student and contributed collections in the late 1950s. Vaughan’s textbook "Mammalogy" was first printed in 1972 and is in its 6th edition. J. Knox Jones, Jr. contributed specimens in the 1940s and 1950s culminating in his "Distribution and taxonomy of mammals of Nebraska" (1964). Dr. Harvey Gunderson was assistant director of the museum, professor in Zoology, and curator of Zoology from 1964-1977 during which he also produced a textbook for mammalogy in 1976. In 1997 the Chadron State College (Nebraska) and in 1999 the University of South Dakota mammal collections were transferred to UNSM and incorporated in the collections. Hugh H. Genoways, a mammologist and museum director (1986-1994) added to the collections (primarily Antillean bats), including describing two new subspecies of bats from Grenada and Montserrat in 1998. Genoways and colleagues also produced "Mammals of Nebraska--Checklist, Key, and Bibliography" (2008). A newly discovered species of Panamanian bat (Cynomops freemani) was named in 2018 for Zoology’s recently retired curator, Patricia W. Freeman. In 2019 the University of Nebraska – Kearney (formerly Kearney State College) collections were transferred to UNSM (not yet in this dataset). The collection now has over 21,400 specimens primarily from Nebraska and the northern Great Plains and includes nearly 1,000 collected prior to 1925. Like most state collections, the UNSM mammal collection contains many large series of single species useful for population studies, but now there are substantial holdings of whole skeletons (6,300). An excellent collection of big game trophy heads collected by Mr. Elgin Gates in the mid-20th century are displayed in the halls; these have data and represent several endangered and threatened species.

Data Records

The data in this occurrence resource has been published as a Darwin Core Archive (DwC-A), which is a standardized format for sharing biodiversity data as a set of one or more data tables. The core data table contains 21,440 records.

This IPT archives the data and thus serves as the data repository. The data and resource metadata are available for download in the downloads section. The versions table lists other versions of the resource that have been made publicly available and allows tracking changes made to the resource over time.


The table below shows only published versions of the resource that are publicly accessible.

How to cite

Researchers should cite this work as follows:

University of Nebraska State Museum Mammals Collection (UNSM)


Researchers should respect the following rights statement:

The publisher and rights holder of this work is University of Nebraska State Museum. To the extent possible under law, the publisher has waived all rights to these data and has dedicated them to the Public Domain (CC0 1.0). Users may copy, modify, distribute and use the work, including for commercial purposes, without restriction.

GBIF Registration

This resource has been registered with GBIF, and assigned the following GBIF UUID: 33b4ca40-0a46-4fa7-8ed4-4f51d1e3304c.  University of Nebraska State Museum publishes this resource, and is itself registered in GBIF as a data publisher endorsed by U.S. Geological Survey.


Occurrence; Specimen


Thomas Labedz
  • Metadata Provider
  • Originator
  • Point Of Contact
Collection Manager
Division of Zoology, University of Nebraska State Museum
645 N 14th St
68588-0338 Lincoln
+01 402-472-8366
Robert Zink
  • Point Of Contact
Division of Zoology, University of Nebraska State Museum
645 N 14th St
68588-0338 Lincoln
+01 612-590-4215
Laura Russell
  • Programmer
VertNet Programmer
David Bloom
  • Programmer
VertNet Coordinator
John Wieczorek
  • Programmer
Information Architect

Geographic Coverage

Primarily Nebraska (17,132) and South Dakota (475) with moderate collections from elsewhere in the United States. A strong collections of bats from the Greater and Lesser Antilles (688). Some collections, usually taxidermy, from elsewhere in the world and zoos.

Bounding Coordinates South West [7, -168], North East [71.5, -50]

Taxonomic Coverage

No Description available

Class Mammalia (Mammals)

Temporal Coverage

Start Date / End Date 1860-01-01 / 2019-01-01

Additional Metadata