Research & Collections
The South Australian Museum houses over four million objects and specimens. They provide irreplaceable records against which we are constantly building and modifying our knowledge and understanding of the natural and cultural world. They are a vital part of Australia's national heritage and play an integral role in the international scientific accord to document our world.
Digitising the Collections
We are privileged enough to have extensive collections at the South Australian Museum, for research and education. The sheer amount of collection materials we hold means it is impossible to have everything on display. To make the collections as accessible as possible, we are digitising our collections to provide greater access for researchers to find and use the data they need.
Atlas of Living Australia
The Atlas of Living Australia (ALA) is a national collaboration between the CSIRO, Australian museums, herbaria, other biological collections and the Australian Government. Combining our data with that from other collections expands the potential uses of that information for scientific, biodiversity and ecological research.
You can use the ALA to find information about Australian animals, plants and other living organisms, collated from field observations and collections. You can also contribute your own sightings or pictures, and explore the species found in your area.
In 2011 and 2012, we received support from the Atlas of Living Australia to purchase equipment and establish a volunteer program. A team of dedicated volunteers have been photographing and databasing the holotypes from the Terrestrial Invertebrate Collection. Read their blog about their experience and reports from this digitisation project and workflow.
Procedure manuals for the South Australian Museum's imaging equipment, including microscope and macro photography can be downloaded below. If you are interested in volunteering for this project, contact Alexis Tindall.
Data from the South Australian Museum's collection is also available with other Australian museums' data at the Online Zoological Collections of Australian Museums (OZCAM).
The South Australian Museum Archives contains records relating to our State's cultural and natural heritage. The material held includes expedition journals, papers, maps, film, sound recordings, photographs, and drawings. There is also a wealth of information collected by scientists, collection managers, directors and curators since 1856.
Access the Archives collection here.