National Museums Liverpool

Sea Bird

Synonyms: Pachyptila desolata


Synonyms: Aphritis gobio

National Museums Liverpool has 50 specimens from the HMS Challenger (1872-76) voyage – mostly fish and birds.

HMS Challenger and National Museums Liverpool

Specimens form HMS Challenger are stored at the World Museum site. Almost all were transferred by the Trustees of the British Museum (now Natural History Museum, London) after the voyage. It was once common for museums to transfer or exchange duplicate material. Two specimens were transferred by Norwich Castle Museum.

The collection also contains a spear head.  It is slightly curved, made from bone and has barbs down one side measuring 23 mm x 10 mm x 382 mm. It was collected by FJ Pearcey in Patagonia. Catalogue number

About National Museums Liverpool

National Museums Liverpool is a group of museums and galleries:

  • Walker Art Gallery
  • World Museum
  • Museum of Liverpool
  • Merseyside Maritime Museum which also houses the International Slavery Museum and Seized, border Force National Museum
  • Piermasters House
  • Sudley house
  • Lady Lever Art Gallery

Wider collections

Collections at the World Museum include:

  • Antiquities – 50,000 artefacts from across the ancient world including Egyptian, Greek, Roman and Anglo-Saxon collections.
  • Botany – The herbarium currently contains around 400,000 specimens, the great majority being pressed dried mounted specimens.
  • Ethnology – Our collection ranks among the top six collections in the country and is made up of around 40,000 objects.
  • Geology – The geological collection at World Museum contains over 40,000 fossils as well as extensive rock and mineral collections.
  • Horology – The horology collections are extensive, containing over 12,000 items and are of international significance.
  • Physical Sciences – The collection contains several significant items from the Liverpool Royal Institution and Bidston Observatory.
  • Zoology – The zoology collection is made up of around 1.2 million specimens of invertebrate and vertebrate animals.

National Museums Liverpool’s collections can be explored online.


Uncharted (Island II) by Damien Flood 

Using National Museums Liverpool’s data

Permission has been given to use specimen information and photos in accordance with the HMS Challenger Project IR Statement.


Please send National Museums Liverpool an email if you would like to enquire about the collections.

A selection of National Museums Liverpool’s Challenger specimens