Zoological Institute – St Petersburg, Russia

En route to the ICES Annual Science Conference in Riga, Latvia I was fortunate to travel via St Petersburg. Here I visited several researchers in the Zoological Institute. Researchers only work Monday-Thursday at the Institute due to lack of funds to heat and light the building. The institute has an impressive collection of fish samples from around the world – 56,000 jars in total! They continue to add to the collection, primarily from freshwater and nearby surrounds as funds have dried up over the years for collections from further afield. The entire collection is on card files in a small office, arranged alphabetically by species. Following a tour around the collection we had tea in the same room that housed the card files before heading downstairs to an amazing collection of animals in the Museum of Zoology. This museum was founded in 1832 and features a woolly mammoth thawed from the Siberian ice along with a huge blue whale skeleton. While it was an old style museum it was impressive for the diversity of organisms on display