Collections & Loans


The Southeastern Louisiana University Vertebrate Museum is a predominantly wet collection,
housing jars of preserved fishes, reptiles, and amphibians. The collection is divided
into 3 sections: Ichthyology, Herpetology, and Mammalogy & Ornithology. We also have
a tissue database for fishes and herps as well. 


image of collections and loans


Ichthyology (Fish) Collection

The collection of fishes is the largest and fastest growing of the collections in
the SLU Vertebrate Museum. We have over
7,000 lots of fishes, containing some 85,000 specimens. Our holdings are rich in native species from southern Louisiana (particularly the
Florida Parishes and the Lake Pontchartrain Basin) and adjacent regions. Additionally,
we have large collections of freshwater fishes from Mexico, Guatemala, and Belize.

In addition to the fluid specimens, we have over 2,000 archived tissue samples from
fishes for genetic analyses. Most of the tissue samples have corresponding voucher
specimens archived in the collection.



Herpetology (Reptile and Amphibian) Collection

The majority of the collection consists of specimens from the southern United States,
particularly southern Louisiana. We also have moderately large holdings of specimens
from the western United States and the West Indies.

In addition to fluid specimens, we have a collection of amphibian and reptile tissue
samples for genetic analyses. Most of these tissue samples have corresponding voucher
specimens in the fluid collection. We also have a histological (slide) collection
for studies of reproductive anatomy in amphibians and reptiles.

The museum is also home to the Harold A. Dundee Herpetological Library, a collection
of thousands of biological books, journals, and reprints, particularly herpetological



Mammalogy & Ornithology (Mammal and Bird) Collection

The museum maintains a collection of birds and mammal skins, almost exclusively from
the local area. These collections have received little growth since the 1970’s but
we have several hundred specimens, and corresponding skulls for most of the mammal
skins. We would like to collaborate with local scientists to grow this collection.
Please contact [email protected] for information and inquiries. 




Direct all loan requests to Curator Dr. Kyle Piller ([email protected]).

Include a letter outlining the research project, specimens requested, and a detailed
description of what will be done with the specimens (e.g., manipulations, dissections,

Do not hesitate to contact the museum staff for inquiries of our holdings, but the
museum holdings are uploaded to online collection repositories (listed below).


When referencing specimens from the Southeastern Louisiana University Vertebrate Museum
for a manuscript, be sure that the specimens are referred to in the correct format.
The prefix for catalog numbers at Southeastern is “
SLU” not “Southeastern“. See the ASIHStandard Symbolic Codes for Institutional Resource Collections in Herpetology & Ichthyology for standard institutional abbreviations.



Digital Resources