Amazonian Spiders and Butterflies

Digitalization and presentation of the scientific collections

Ausschnitt eines Schmetterlingsinventariums mit "Agrias claudina" und "Memphis" Edelfaltern, Zentralamazonien. Foto: Dr. Hubert Höfer

The Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde Karlsruhe (SMNK) is one of the ten largest natural history research collections and exhibiting museums in Germany and owns a collection of approximately 2.4 million butterflies. The SMNK would like to intensify its collaboration with the Instituto Nacional de Pesquisas da Amazônia (INPA) in Brazil, which possesses extensive expertise in the study of spiders and butterflies due to its geographic proximity to the world’s largest population of these species.
With work experience gained at the INPA, the fellow from Brazil will be in charge of inventorying the scientific collections in Karlsruhe, digitalizing them and making them available to fellow researchers. He or she will master the methods of data management, indexing specimens and curatorial processing of a large collection. The indexed collections will then be divided between both institutes and made available for future research endeavours. At the end of the project, the fellow will collaborate with his/her SMNK colleagues to produce an illustrated guide to Central Amazonian butterflies and a database-driven Internet presentation of the results of his/her research.

Rose Vieira, Fellow at the Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde Karlsruhe

The Brazilian ecologist, Dr. Rose Vieira (* 1964) worked on an association involving army ants, birds and butterflies in Amazonian rainforests. The butterflies feed on droppings of ant-following birds which prey on escaping insects and arachnids. Dr. Vieira studied the effects of deforestation on the ecological interactions. She works with the Amazon Research Institute INPA and Museum of the Amazon MUSA to enlarge the knowledge on the diversity of invertebrate animals. At the museum in Karlsruhe SMNK she improves the communication of scientific data to different target groups by means of a variety of media, crucial to reach conservation aims. (external link, opens in a new window)

The International Museum Fellowship programme

With this funding programme, the Federal Cultural Foundation enables guest curators and researchers from abroad to work at museums or public collections in Germany for a duration of 18 months.

International Museum Fellowship (external link, opens in a new window)


Staatliches Museum für Naturkunde Karlsruhe

Erbprinzenstraße 13

76133 Karlsruhe (external link, opens in a new window)