The Zoological museum in Saint Petersburg is the largest one of a kind in Russia and among the greatest worldwide. Its history is connected to the creation of the Kunstkamera – the first Russian museum created by Peter the Great in 1714.
Zoological museum of the Imperial Academy of Science was established in 1832. It was open to the public in 1838. Back then, the collection included some exhibits from a zoological department of Kunstkamera. The first director of the museum F. Brandt contributed a lot to the development of the Zoological museum. Many valuable pieces were brought by Russian travellers, such as Nikolay Przhevalsky, Nicholas Mikluho-Maklaya.
As the collection expanded over time, the museum required new premises. In 1896 it moved to a building to the left from the Saint Petersburg Stock Exchange on the Vasilievsky Island. In 1901 the museum opened its doors again in the presence of Emperor Nicholas II and his family.
In 1930 the museum became a part of the Zoological Institute of the Russian Academy of Science. In fact, it serves as a laboratory for many zoological researches and experiments.
The museum fund is gradually enlarged by new exhibits, brought from travel tours. The total square of exposition is about 6 000 square meters. Current collection includes over 30 000 species of animals. Apart from that, the fund contains around 15 million samples of fauna representatives. The collection is organized in a systematic order. In the Zoological museum you can see all the animals – from protozoan to ape-man. Some species present Darwin’s Theory of Evolution.
The exhibit in the museum. Photo is taken from the website
There you’ll see all ground of animals – invertebrates, fish, amphibians and others. There is a large collection of birds, mammals and butterflies. Visitors are especially interested in seeing the skeletons of mammoths and a sea cow, as well as a southern elephant. The collection includes many rare stuffed animals. For instance, you can see a scarecrow of a favourite horse of Peter the Great – Lizett.
As a result of scientific research expedition, a new unique exposition was organized in the museum. It includes animals that reside at great depths of volcanic zones.
The Zoological museum has regular as well as temporary exhibitions that present rare exhibits from all over the world.
Open: Wed-Mon 11:00-18:00
Closed: Tuesdays, second Wednesday of each month
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