Guide to collections

Collection of marine bivalves

Name Collection of marine bivalves
Alternative name MCNB. Col. marine bivalves
Cite as Museu de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona (MCNB). Collection of marine bivalves
MCNB. Col. marine bivalves
Description Collection of molluscs consisting of marine bivalves preserved either dry (99% of lots) or in 70% ethyl alcohol. In all, there are 48 000 elements grouped in 9650 lots. Most of the material originates from the Museum's original collection belonging to Francesc Martorell, and other historical collections such as those of Antoni de Samà, Artur Bofill, Joan Baptista d'Aguilar-Amat, Joan Rosals, the Barcelona Royal Academy of Science and Arts and Baltasar Serradell. More recent additions include specimens from the collection of Luis Gasull. Geographically, the collection covers the whole world, but there is an abundance of material from the Mediterranean (above all, the Catalan and Balearic coasts) andsome from the Pacific, Atlantic and Indian oceans (above all, Southeast Asia). Broad taxonomic scope. The whole collection has been registered, documented and digitalized to specimen-lot level. Data from a part of the collection can be consulted on-line on the website of the Barcelona Natural History Museum and the portal GBIF. A selection of specimens from the collection has been on display in the Museum's permanent collection. Specimens from 10 lots of the collection are currently on display in Museum Blau.
Provenance The oldest samples correspond to specimens from the shell collection of Francesc Martorell i Peña and were part of the original collection of the Martorell Museum (1879). The marine bivalve collection also includes examples from the collection of Antoni de Samà (added in around 1914) of marine molluscs from the Catalan coast. The shell collections of Aguilar-Amat, Artur Bofill and Joan Rosals added a considerable number of specimens to the Msueum in 1917-1920. As well, material from other historical collections were added at a later date and include specimens from the Barcelona Royal Academy of Science Arts (on permanent loan to the Museum since 1925) and the collections of Manuel de Chía (1923), Baltasar Serradell (1931), José Giner (1932) and the Jaume Balmes Institute (1936). The collection of the Royal Academy includes material from Jaume Basté, Eduardo i Adolfo Cháquert, Eduard Fontseré, Eusebi Mas and José María Salvañá. Specimens donated by Adolfo de Reynoso and Alejandro Torres have also been located. Of note are the donations by collaborators and material originating from other sources linked to the Museum (Ascensi Codina, Marià Ferrer Bravo, Vicenta Gibert, Josep Maluquer and Santiago Novellas, amongst others). There is also a little material originating from the Aguilar-Amat expedition to French Indochina (1929) or from some of the campaigns to the Spanish protectorate in Morocco. The oldest specimens preserved in liquid come from the Naples Zoological Station and the Santander Marine Biology Station, part of a purchase of marine animals made by the Museum in 1916-1917. Under the direction of A. Bofill (1891-1929) and then J. B. d’Aguilar-Amat (1929-1936) the malacological section of the Museum began to be reorganized and all the different collections were united and their nomenclature revised (all the original labels were preserved). More recently, the collection of the malacologist Luis Gasull (donated in 1983 when Rosario Nos was the director of the Museum) added a large number of lots (almost 10 % of the total of all marine bivalves), most of which were from the Balearic Islands. Francesc Uribe has been curator of the Museum's non-Arthropod Invertebrate collection since 1997. During his time in charge, the registration, documentation and computerization to specimen-lot level has been completed.
Kingdom coverage Animalia
Taxon coverage Bivalvia
Common name coverage marine bivalves
Collectors Aguilar-Amat, Joan Baptista d'
Altimira Aleu, Carles
Bofill i Poch, Artur
Closas, J.
Codina i Ferrer, Ascensi
Ferrer Bravo, Marià
Gabot, Laura
Gasull Martínez, Luís
Gibert, Vicenta
Gros, J.
Hernández Rojo, Elisabeth
Iglesias Iglesias, A.
Laboratori Oceanogràfic de Balears
Maluquer, Josep
Mateu, G.
Mercadal, B.
Novellas Bofill, Santiago
Samà, Antoni de
Zariquiey, Ricardo
Collection type Preserved
Primary purpose Research
Include types No
Grouping principle Taxonomic
Formations periods ca. 1882-
Development statuses Passive growth
Collection extents 48000 specimens, 9650 lots
Documentation state Documentary control of all the lots (registration, inventory and computerization). Most material still needs to be revised: identfication to species level based on documentation and original labels (nomenclature updated for the samples documented with MuseumPlus).
Specimen preservation methods Fluid-preserved, No Treatment
Preparation and conservation Dried material boxed or wrapped up in protective material in individual containers. Periodical control of samples in liquid. Control of the environmental conditions in storage areas.
McGinley conservation statuses Level 8
Conservation status date 25-06-2013 (dd-mm-yyyy)
Institution Natural Science Museum of Barcelona - Non-Arthropod Invertebrates Department
Parent collection Collection of marine molluscs
Associated person Miguel Prieto (Documentalist), Francesc Uribe (Curator),
Item level access MCNB Mollusca GBIF online database (date when consulted) (accessed through GBIF data portal,, 2013-09-04)
Col·leccions en línia de Zoologia (MCNB) / Online Zoological Collections (MCNB)
Related material Bofill i Poch, A., 1917. La colecció Rosals. Anuari de la Junta de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona, 2: 193-196.

Bofill i Poch, A., 1917. Moluscos ingressats en el Museu desde el mes de juny de 1916. Anuari de la Junta de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona, 2: 533-549.

Bofill i Poch, A., 1918. Moluscos Ingressats en el Museu des de el 1er de juliol de 1917. Anuari de la Junta de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona, 3: 201-224.

Gasull, L. & Cuerda, J., 1974. Malacología del contenido gástrico de las grandes estrellas de mar. Boletín de la Sociedad de Historia Natural de Baleares, 19: 155-175

Josep Maluquer, 1917. Organització i increment de la Secció Oceanogràfica. Anuari de la Junta de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona, 2: 205-238.

Martorell, M. & Bofill, A., 1888. Catálogo de la colección conchiológica que fué de D. Francisco Martorell y Peña legada por dicho señor á la ciudad de Barcelona y existente en el Museo Martorell de la propia ciudad. Barcelona. 94 pp.

Nos, R., 1984. Homenatge del Museu de Zoologia de Barcelona a tres malacòlegs catalans. Lluís Gasull Martínez, Carles Altimira Aleu i Jaume Bot Arenas. Miscel·lània Zoològica, 8: 311-312.