A zoological specimen is an animal or part of an animal preserved for scientific use. Various uses are: to verify the identity of a (species), to allow study, increase public knowledge of zoology. Zoological specimens are extremely diverse. Examples are bird, mounted specimens, pinned insects, dried material, animals preserved in spirit and microscope slides.

Type Specimens

According to a precise set of rules laid down in the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (ICZN), the scientific name of every taxon is almost always based on specimens. Types are of great significance to to taxonomists.

Zoological collections are maintained by ZMKU. Ensuring that types are kept in good condition and made available for examination by taxonomists are two important functions of such collections.

Voucher specimens

A voucher is a representative specimen of the animal used in a study, such as a specimen collected as part of an ecological survey or a specimen which was the source of DNA for a molecular study. Voucher specimens confirm the identity of the species referred to in the study.