Archaezoology collections

The Natural History Museum’s collections are mostly historical since nowadays all animal remains that are being examined by our scientists go back for storage to the archaeological services of the Canton of Berne (Archäologischer Dienst des Kantons Bern, ADB). The ADB are responsible for all sites of archaeological interest in the Canton of Berne (BE) since 1969. Previously this responsibility was taken by the historians at the Museum for History (BHM), who handed over most of the zoological remains that were of no interest to them to our museum.

In chronological order our collections consist of animal bones from the following sites or of remains from the same genus but from different sites (small systematic collections by individual authors):

Glacial and Interglacial periods:

Marmota (different localities, collection F. Michel); Equus, Mammonteus, Rangifer, Ovibos, Coelodonta (isolated finds mostly from gravel pits, BE). Various genera from shale & coal quarries: Gondiswil, Zell, Engelprächtigen, Fuchsmatt (all in the Canton of Lucerne, LU). Various genera from caves: Schnurenloch (BE), mostly Ursus spelaeus, Chilchli (BE), Ranggiloch (BE), Wildkirchli (Canton of Appenzell Inner-Rhoden, AI).

Paleolithic and Mesolithic periods:

Birsmatten Basisgrotte (Canton of Basel Land, BL), Moosbühl (BE), Kohlerhöhle (BL)

Neolithic period:

Mostly from lake settlements; Lattrigen, Sutz, Port, Pasquart, Schafis, Vinelz, Lüscherz (all: BE). Twann (BE, only carnivores, the rest is kept at the ADB). Collection J. Uhlmann: a large collection of domestic and wild animals from different Swiss localities, arranged by systematic anatomy.

Different periods:

Equus (different localities, collection F. Marek)