Senckenberg Natural History Collections Dresden
Research in this section concerns a wide range of entomological topics. The comparative and functional morphology of the exoskeleton and musculature of insects is the main focus, and the morphology of the genitalia in particular. Further projects are dedicated to the phylogeny, taxonomy, palaeontology, and faunistics of various insect taxa, predominantly the Dictyoptera (cockroach-like insects), Mantophasmatodea (heelwalkers) und Coleoptera (beetles). In the various research topics, members of the section collaborate with a variety of partners worldwide. In projects concerned with bionics, we strive to transfer – jointy with our partners from technical disciplines – mechanisms of the insect skeleto-muscular system into practical applications. The section also organises the biennial „Dresden Meetings on Insect Phylogeny“. Our research mainly contributes to the Research Field I “Biodiversity and Systematics” of Senckenberg.
The Coleoptera collection includes ca. 80,000 species from all zoogeographic regions, with altogether about 2 million specimens. Most of the specimens are dry-mounted and pinned. The Curculionoidea (weevils) form the main focus of the collection, with close to 20,000 species and primary types for ca. 7,400 names. The likewise very large Carabidae collection (ground beetles) as well as the Dytiscidae collection (diving beetles) have been set up anew and inventorised in recent years, and the nomenclature has been updated.