Guide to collections

Collection of marine molluscs

Name Collection of marine molluscs
Alternative name MCNB. Col. marine molluscs
Cite as Museu de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona (MCNB). Collection of marine molluscs
MCNB. Col. marine molluscs
Description Collection of marine molluscs consisting of dry shells (99% of lots) and whole organisms preserved in ethyl alcohol 70º. In all, there are 239,000 specimens grouped in 33,250 lots. The collection includes specimens from the classes Gastropoda, Bivalvia, Cephalopoda, Polyplacophora and Scaphopoda, above all from the first two of these classes. Most wet specimens are either Gastropoda or Cephalopoda. Wide taxonomic range of Gastropoda and Bivalvia. The geographical range of the collection covers the whole world, and also has a good selection of material from Mediterranean (above all, from Catalonia and the Balearic Islands), the Pacific and its archipelagos, and the Atlantic and Indian Oceans (above all, from South East Asia). Most of the material belongs to the Museum's historical collection (original collection of Francesc Martorell and collections of Artur Bofill, Antoni de Samà, Joan Baptista d'Aguilar-Amat, Joan Rosals, Barcelona Royal Academy of Science and the Arts, Baltasar Serradell and the Jaume Balmes Institute, amongst others). Recent donations include the collections of Luis Gasull Martínez and Joan Rosal i Sagalés, both with a large amount of material from the Balearic Islands and the Catalan coast. All of the 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 from the collection of marine molluscs has been displayed as part of the Museum's permanent exhibition. Currently, a group of 50 dry and wet lots is on display in the Museu Blau.
Provenance The first specimens came from the shell collection of Francesc Martorell i Peña and were part of the original collection of the Martorell Museum (1879). Specimens of marine molluscs from the Philippine Archipelago belonging to the collection of Adolfo de Reynoso were donated a few years later (1882). Specimens from the collection of Antoni de Samà (donated around 1914) of marine molluscs from Catalonia also form part of the collection. The addition of the shell collections of Artur Bofill, Joan Baptista d'Aguilar-Amat and Joan Rosals in 1917-1920 increased the Museum's collection significantly. Further material came from other historical collections that were added subsequently, including specimens from the collections of Barcelona Royal Academy of Science and the Arts (on permanent loan to the Museum since 1925), Manuel de Chia (1923), Baltasar Serradell (1931), José Manuel Giner (1932) and the Jaume Balmes Institute (1936), amongst others. The Royal Academy’s collection also includes donations from Jaime Basté, Adolf and Eduard Cháquert, Eduard Fontseré, Eusebio Mas, José Moll and José María Salvañá. Also of interest are the donations made by collaborators and other sources related to the Museum (Marià Ferrer Bravo, Vicenta Gibert, Carmen Giménez, Goñi, J. Gros, Josep Maluquer and Santiago Novellas, amongst others). Also forming part of the collection are a few specimens from expeditions such as that led by Martínez de la Escalera to Equatorial Guinea (1919) and Aguilar-Amat to French Indochina (1929), as well as from the campaigns to the Spanish Protectorate in Morocco. The oldest wet specimens are part of the collection of the Oceanographic Section that was inaugurated at the beginning of 1917, which includes a group of lots from the Naples Zoological Station. Under the direction of Artur Bofill i Poch (1892-1929) and then J. B. d’Aguilar-Amat (1929-1936), the malacological section began to be reorganized and all the different collections were united and the nomenclature revised (all the original labels have been preserved). More recent additions include the collections of Luis Gasull Martínez (donated in 1983 when Rosario Nos was Museum Director) and of Joan Rosals i Sagalés, donated in 2000. The donation of these two collections greatly increased the Museum’s collection of marine species (especially from the Balearic Islands and Catalonia). 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 (strength), Cephalopoda, Gastropoda (strength), Polyplacophora, Scaphopoda
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, Luis
Gaubin, R. P.
Gibert, Vicenta
Gros, Enric
Gros, J.
Hernández Rojo, Elisabeth
Iglesias Iglesias, A.
Laboratori Oceanogràfic de Balears
Maluquer, Josep
Martínez de la Escalera, Manuel
Mateu, G.
Mercadal, B.
Novellas Bofill, Santiago
Paltré, Josep
Resallt, Rafael
Samà, Antoni de
Torres Mínguez, Alejandro
Zariquiey, Ricardo
Collection type Preserved
Primary purpose Research
Include types No
Grouping principle Taxonomic
Formations periods ca. 1882-
Development statuses Passive growth
Collection extents 239000 specimens, 33250 lots
Documentation state Documental control of all lots (registration, inventory and computerization). Most of the material still requires revision. Identification to species level carried out according to the original documentation and 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. Some groups of specimens such as the Luis Gasull and Joan Rosal collections have Tyvek labels.
McGinley conservation statuses Level 8
Conservation status date 29-07-2013 (dd-mm-yyyy)
Institution Natural Science Museum of Barcelona - Non-Arthropod Invertebrates Department
Subcollections Collection of marine molluscs from the Balearic Islands
Marine molluscs collection of Luis Gasull
Collection of marine molluscs from Catalonia
Collection of marine molluscs from the Mediterranean Sea
Collection of marine molluscs from Cuba
Collection of marine molluscs from Philippines
Collection of marine bivalves
Cephalopods collection
Polyplacophorans collection
Scaphopods collection
Collection of marine gastropods
Marine molluscs collection of the family Nassariidae
Collection of marine molluscs of Joan Rosal i Sagalés
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.

García Franquesa, Masó Ros & Uribe Porta, 2011. Martínez de la Escalera en las colecciones del Museo de Ciencias Naturales de Barcelona. La expedición a Guinea Ecuatorial de 1919. In: Al encuento del naturalista Manuel Martínez de la Escalera: 525-534 (C. Martín Albadalejo & I. Izquierdo Moya, eds.). Monografías del Museo Nacional de Ciencias Naturales de Madrid (CSIC), Madrid.

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.

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

Maluquer, J., 1918. Les seccions ictiològica i d'invertebrats marins en 1918. Anuari de la Junta de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona, 3: 192-198.

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.