The collection entails some 4930 specimens, mostly conserved in fluid. A few are dry. They originate from all oceans and a number of seas worldwide, and were essentially collected in the 19th century. The major collection spots are Japanese waters (Tokyo bay and surroundings) and the Mediterranean, namely the Adriatic Sea. The Japanese specimens were collected by Ludwig Döderlein between 1879 and 1881. The Adriatic ones are from Franz Doflein, 1896. There are abundant specimens collected by Paul Bühlichen in the North Sea, and collects from the Deutsche Tiefsee Expedition (1898-1899). Fishes from the Museum of Comparative Zoology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, were often sent by Louis Agassiz: they are from American coasts or rivers. Specimens from Arnold Ortmann were collected on the Tanzania coasts, or locally in Alsace, those sent by Wilhelm Reiss in 1874 are from Ecuador. There is also a significant representation of the local aquatic fauna of the 19th and 20th centuries. Finally, many specimens were purchased in the 19th century from Natural history dealers such as Gustav Schneider in Basel, Hermann Rolle in Berlin and the Museum Godeffroy in Hamburg.
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|Bounding Coordinates||South West [-90, -180], North East [90, 180]|