About the Organization
The Australian Museum is the oldest and largest natural history museum in Australia, and is currently in its 176th year. The research staff currently consists of 22 research scientists and about 80- support staff. The Museum is funded by the Government of New South Wales, but has maintained throughout its history an international focus, with particular emphasis on the Australian region, including Papua New Guinea and surrounding areas. The AM has significant terrestrial and marine collections, with major holdings in entomology, marine invertebrates and fish.
PBI co-principal investigator Gerry Cassis was a Principal Research Scientist, Director of the Centre for Biodiversity and Conservation Research, and Head of the Integrative Science Branch at the Australian Museum.
Contribution to the Project
The Australian Museum was the subcontracting institution for the PBI award, and as such was one of two focal institutions for the PBI project (2003-2007).
Collections: The Australian Museum has long traditions in the study of Hemiptera and today houses Australia's largest collection of Heteroptera. Much of this material has been acquired through the field work of co-PI Gerry Cassis and includes the core materials for any study of Australian Miridae.
Imaging: The Australian Museum operates a modern scanning electron microscope facility. The Centre for Biodiversity and Conversation Research is equipped with a Microptics-USA digital imaging system outfitted with a Nikon D1X digital SLR camera, Infinity K2 and HDF lenses, and a Microptics_USA ML-1000 stroboscopic lighting system.
DNA Sequencing: Support and training for PBI work in DNA sequencing was readily handled at the Australian Museum, which produced several ground-breaking papers using museum-generated sequences.
IT Services: The Australian Museum, through the Centre for Biodiversity and Conversation Research, has been instrumental in the implementation of web-based mapping and interactive keys.