Guide to collections

Collection of poriferans

Name Collection of poriferans
Cite as MCNB. Col. poriferans
Description Collection of invertebrate skeletons and whole organisms, around 60% of which are dry preserved and the rest in 70% ethanol. It contains 119 different specimens corresponding to 83 lots. Broad taxonomic range, with specimens from many different classes and orders. The geographical origin of the specimens is mainly the western Mediterranean, but there are also some specimens from the Antarctic, South-East Asia and the West Indies. The collection contains historical elements (e.g. from the Royal Academy of Science and Arts of Barcelona), and others from the Naples Zoological Station and the Santander Marine Biology Laboratory. A recent addition is a collection of wet specimens collected by Maria Antònia Bibiloni, a specialist in sponges from the University of Barcelona. The whole collection has been registered, documented and digitalized to specimen lot level. Data of a part of the collection can be consulted on-line at the website of the Barcelona Natural History Museum, and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility. Ten lots are on permanent exhibition in the Museu Blau.
Provenance The historical part of this collection originates primarily from the former Oceanographical Section of the Museum, set up at the beginning of 1917 by Josep Maluquer, and includes wet specimens of sponges from the Naples Zoological Station and the Santander Marine Biology Laboratory. The collection also contains dry samples from a number of historical collections such as that of the Royal Academy of Science and Arts of Barcelona, and that of Ramon de Bolòs i Saderra. Subsequently, a collection of wet specimens was donated to the Museum by Maria Antònia Bibiloni, a researcher from the University of Barcelona. The most recent additions include specimens collected by Museum staff and collaborators. Francesc Uribe has been the curator of the Department of Non-Arthropod Invertebrates since 1997 and since then the inventory and digitalization of the Museum’s whole collection has been carried out to specimen lot level. A selection of the sponges has formed part of the permanent display of the Museum since the creation of the abovementioned Oceanographical Section. Currently, ten lots are on permanent display in the Planeta Vida exhibition in the Museu Blau.
Kingdom coverage Animalia
Taxon coverage Porifera, Spongillidae (strength)
Common name coverage sponges
Geospatial coverage Antarctica, Balearic Islands, Catalonia (strength), Cuba, Gulf of Naples, Philippines, Santander, Spain (strength), Western Mediterranean
Collectors Berrocal, Marta
Bibiloni, Maria Antònia
Omedes Regàs, Anna
Uribe Porta, Francesc
Uriz, Iosune
Collection type Preserved
Primary purpose Research
Include types No
Grouping principle Taxonomic
Formations periods 1917-
Development statuses Passive growth
Collection extents 300 lots, 350 specimens, 81 microscope slides
Documentation state Documentary control of 100% of lots (register, inventory and computerization in Museum Plus). Around 50% of lots still need to be determined.
Object class invertebrate skeletons, microscope slides, whole organisms
Specimen preservation methods Fluid-preserved, No Treatment, Slide mount
Preparation and conservation Dry material boxed and wrapped in protective elements in individual containers. Wet specimens preserved in 70% ethanol. Monitoring of the environmental conditions in storage areas.
McGinley conservation statuses Level 8
Conservation status date 27-01-2016 (dd-mm-yyyy)
Institution Natural Science Museum of Barcelona - Non-Arthropod Invertebrates Department
Subcollections Freshwater sponges collection of Anna Traveset
Associated person Miguel Prieto (Documentalist), Francesc Uribe (Curator),
Item level access MCNB General Zoology GBIF online database (date when consulted) (accessed through GBIF data portal,, 2014-10-14)
Col·leccions en línia de Zoologia (MCNB) / Online Zoological Collections (MCNB)
Related material MALUQUER, Josep (1917). Organització i increment de la Secció Oceanogràfica. Anuari de la Junta de Ciències Naturals de Barcelona, 2: 205-238.

TRAVESET, Anna (1985). Contribució al coneixement de les esponges d'aigua dolça a la Península Ibèrica. Barcelona: Universitat de Barcelona, Facultat de Biologia. 87 p.

TRAVESET, Anna (1986). Clave de identificación de las esponjas de agua dulce de la Península Ibérica. In: Claves de identificación de la flora y fauna de las aguas continentales de la Península Ibérica, 2. Barcelona: Asociación Española de Limnología. 25 p.