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Angelo State University
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Angelo State Natural History Collections

The Biology Department maintains the Angelo State Natural History Collections, which contains nearly 150,000 specimens of all types of living organisms. The collections are preserved, documented and curated assemblages that are important to a wide array of human activities.

The collections are essential to the management of natural resources because they document the diversity and biology of organisms that impact agriculture, health and urban and other rural activities. They also characterize the ecosystems that we all depend on.

The collections are a resource for many fields of biological research. The presence and growth of the collections at ASU are important to the university, San Angelo and the Concho Valley because they are a readily available local resource for the region.


The collections have been very active for the last four years, thanks in part to a grant awarded to the ASNHC by the National Science Foundation’s Collections in Support of Biological Research program. The objectives of the grant, “Modernization and Digitization of the Angelo State Natural History Collections” (NSF Grant Number 1203363) were completed as of 1 July 2016. In addition to completion of backlog cataloguing in all collections, data on most of the collections are now available on-line through our website, as well as through VertNet, GBIF, and iDigBio and the networked databases of biodiversity data. Other additions to our website are digital images of plant specimens in the Herbarium and an interface for K-12 educators to use in class exercises about animals and plants of the Concho Valley of Texas.


Use of the Collections

All qualified visitors can study the specimens by making an appointment or by taking out a loan. Contact the Biology department at for loan requests or the appropriate curator. To learn more about each collection, use the links provided.

A researcher wanting to borrow any materials must make a loan request in writing to the appropriate curator. Loans are made for a period of six months with extensions possible by written request. Destructive sampling requests will be considered by the curators.

Please refer to the ASNHC Tissue Loan Policy regarding the information that should be included in a request.

Searchable Databases

Data for the collections is managed through Specify 6. Selected information can be searched through our web portal managed by SilverBiology. 

Through the NSF grant, every effort is being made to ensure the accuracy of cataloged information. However, as the collection data are actively being cleaned and updated, researchers and other users are strongly encouraged to verify information before use or publication. This can be done by contacting the Collections Manager.

ASNHC Mission Statement

The mission of the Angelo State Natural History Collections is to:

  • Provide a permanent, well-maintained, active reference collection of the world with an emphasis on the flora and fauna of the Concho Valley and surrounding areas.
  • Provide a learning laboratory for ASU students to facilitate and encourage research and education.
  • Promote awareness, understanding and appreciation of global biodiversity.
  • Contribute specimens and data for study by research scientists around the world.

ASNHC in The News

Searchable Databases

The ASNHC database web portal are managed through SilverBiology.  Data may also be queried through GBIF, VertNet, and iDigBio.

NOTE:  Researchers and other users are strongly encouraged to verify information before use or publication.  

For additional information, please contact the Collections Manager.  

Educational resources

The ASNHC staff has created a series of web pages to help students utilize our collection specimens and data.  Six official Texas symbols have been highlighted.  For each of these, there is an exercise. 

Check it out! Explore ASNHC

About the Concho Valley

Read about the region where many of the Angelo State Natural History Collections specimens are gathered.

Learn More About Concho Valley

Terry C. Maxwell Endowment in Natural History

Read about the endowment established for the natural history collections.

Learn More About the Terry C. Maxwell Endowment in Natural History