Moving gigantic INBio collection gets first OK

Experts at the Museo Nacional have given the first go-ahead for the acquisition of the massive nature collection now held by the Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad in Heredia.

moves toward the construction of a new building in Pavas to house the collection. That building is scheduled to be ready in 2017.

No one is sure but the conservative estimate is that the collection contains more than 3.5 million specimens. The collection belongs to the state, and an
arrangement with the Dirección Fitosanitaria del Estado of the Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganadería allowed the collection to remain at the  Instituto Nacional de Biodiversidad in Santo Domingo de Heredia.

Evaluation is a complex chore because the institute, known as INBio, has its own collections, and the material going to the museum must be separated. Evaluators checked for the quality of the specimens, the integrity of whatever case they were in as well as the presence or absence of any fungus or other unwanted biological pests.

INBio is devising an online catalogue of the material now. The collection is heavy in insects and butterflies, all representative of Costa Rica’s biodiversity. There also are various plant species, mosses, mushrooms and algae.

The museum board of directors approved the initial evaluation Friday. Work will continue into December as workers put many of the specimens in a museum data base. The museum already has a collection of more than 300,000 specimens.

That the museum was receiving the large INBio collection already had been reported, but that a new building will be constructed is new information.

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