Worker bees with pollen stored in beehive cells.

Discover Documentary: Bees

In this episode of Discover, Dr. Ken Walker takes us into Museums Victoria's Entomology Collection. As an expert in native bees, he explains how these tiny creatures have a major global impact.

Portrait of Dr G.A. Waterhouse arranging specimens in his collection at the Australian Museum, 2 February 1931.

Kindred spirits

Between 1891 and 1947, George Lyell and Gustavus Athol Waterhouse's regular correspondence shared a passion for moths and butterflies.

Pinned butterfly in box with paper label.
Museums Victoria Collections

Australia's oldest insect specimen

A Common Evening Brown collected in China in 1742.

A Children's Stick Insect hanging underneath a plant stem, at night.
Museums Victoria Collections

Children's Stick Insect

Find this stick insect in coastal and inland eucalyptus forests.

Visitor in front of butterfly display at the entrance to Bugs Alive exhibition
Visit Melbourne Museum

Bugs Alive!

The amazing world of insects and spiders!

Mirabilis (female) from the George Lyell Collection at Melbourne Museum.

Light sheets

Peter Marriott talks moth bioscans in the Otways for National Science Week at Melbourne Museum.

A Common Grass-blue butterfly on a leaf, showing underside of wings.
Museums Victoria Collections

Common Grass-blue Butterfly

These small lilac-blue butterflies flutter slowly, stopping frequently to feed on the nectar of low-growing flowers.

Sepia portrait of a young man

The sting of the final letter

Transcribing George Lyell's final documents.

Black wasp

Predator vs predator

Wasps give huntsman spiders a taste of their own medicine.

A pressed orchid specimen.

Pressed Orchids

Unlike their Asian counterparts, Australian orchids like the rosy spider orchid, pictured below, are beautifully understated. Delicate and beautiful, they are not flashy like the orchids available at your local nursery.

Trees and mist
Visit Melbourne Museum

Forest Secrets

Walk through a stand of Victoria's mountain forests in the middle of the city.

Moth specimens in a museum collection

Butterflies of the night

The aim of the "George Lyell Collection: Australian entomology past and present" project is to examine the George Lyell collection scientifically and culturally, and to share discoveries with the wider community.

Orange butterfly with brown patches on wing sitting on curled bark.
Museums Victoria Collections

Common Brown Butterfly

This butterfly has orange wings, dark markings and eyespots.

Cream buttefly with black stripes and orange spot hanging from yellow flower.
Museums Victoria Collections

Imperial Hairstreak Butterfly

This butterfly has tails on its hindwings with orange spots just above the tails.

Image taken by a microscope of a bees head

Buzz off!

How do you study a bee so small it can barely be seen? 

Colour illsutration
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Field Guide app to Victorian Fauna

Detail of a colour illustration of a two koalas
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National Field Guide apps

Bird perched on a red bollard
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Wildlife Field Guide app to Gippsland Lakes

Cockatoos taking flight
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Field Guide to the Budj Bim Cultural Landscape

Cover of Butterflies: Identification and Life History Museum Victoria field guide
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Butterflies: Identification and Life History

A Museum Victoria field guide
Cover of Bugs Alive: A Guide to Keeping Australian Invertebrates
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Bugs Alive

A guide to keeping Australian invertebrates
Black and orange beetle on a flower

What are these swarming beetles in my garden?

Each January, the Museum receives many enquiries about swarms of beetles in suburban gardens in and around Melbourne


Bountiful Mallee

Close encounters with Mallee insects.

Five girls looking for marine life on a boat.
Museums Victoria Collections

Help us document biodiversity – record your own sightings

Orange centipede on bark.
Museums Victoria Collections

Scolopendrid Centipede

Dorsal view of stick insect on redish soil.
Museums Victoria Collections

Margined-winged Stick-insect

Large orange-brown moth on bark.
Museums Victoria Collections

Helena Gum-moth

A very large moth with brownish orange wings and prominent eyespots.

Mountain Katydid, wings raised showing colourful abdomen.
Museums Victoria Collections

Mountain Katydid

An insect with striking crimson and blue abdominal bands.

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