The museum's first spider collection was initiated in 1965 by the former curator and head of the Zoology section at the Museum, Prof. Dr. Ludwig Beck. He had collected spiders incidentally during his work on Oribatid mites in Europe and arachnids in South America. The collection was revived and greatly expanded by the present curator and head of the department Dr. Hubert Höfer, even during his trainee period at the museum. He had collected spiders for his diploma and doctoral theses in southern Germany and Amazonian forests in Brazil, and in 1992 he started to deposit part of the material in the zoological collection. The collection comprises approx. 6,900 vials of 690 species from Germany and approx. 4,000 vials of further species from the rest of the world.

Data project and serviceEurope

Spiders collected in Germany are the first data package migrated to and made available through Diversity Workbench. The inclusion of the rest of the spider collection and study data (identified voucher specimens of large inventories) is in progress. Taxonomy generally follows The World Spider Catalog by Norman I. Platnick, but for many European and especially German spider species, the database includes additional information on their distribution, the Red List Status in Germany, Bavaria and Baden-Württemberg and the ecological preferences.

The collection and the datasets are maintained and expanded by the curator of Arachnida, Dr. Hubert Höfer, and his assistant Franziska Meyer, whilst data are organized by Dipl.-Biol. Florian Raub (temporary staff). Notifications about errors of any kind are much appreciated by the staff. The Ministry for Science, Research and the Arts in Baden-Württemberg supported inventory, digitalisation and online access of the collections. Technical support is provided by the IT Center of the Staatliche Naturwissenschaftliche Sammlungen Bayerns with the German GBIF Node for Invertebrates II. Permission is given for free use of data in the search result for non-commercial purposes; any commercial use must be granted by prior written agreement.

Link to GBIF Portal, Dataset SMNKspidercoll

Curator in charge

Dr. Hubert Höfer, Dipl.-Biol.

Dr. Hubert Höfer, Dipl.-Biol.
Phone: +49 721 175-2826