Biological Collections

for Research and Teaching

  • a purple lupine inflorescence

    MONTU Herbarium

    The Herbarium at the University of Montana (MONTU) is an irreplaceable resource for the study of the botany and plant ecology. It's 129,000 plant specimens are largest and best representation of the flora of the Northern Rocky Mountains in the world. The Herbarium is particularly well-known for its outstanding collections from the alpine and montane regions of Montana.

  • weasel skulls photo by Robert Niese

    Philip L. Wright Zoological Museum (UMZM)

    With >24,000 vertebrate specimens, the UMZM holds the largest collections of birds and mammals in Montana. The museum has been instrumental in documenting past and present distribution patterns of vertebrates in the Northern Rockies, and it is a major repository for researchers and wildlife professionals to contribute scientifically valuable materials collected in the course of their work. The museum provides important resources for research, teaching, and educational outreach programs, in western Montana and beyond.

  • hand holding a bitterroot plant

    Ethnobotany Garden at the Payne Family Native American Center

    The Ethnobotany Garden surrounding the University of Montana's Payne Family Native American Center provides an opportunity for public education and a living laboratory for students. Fittingly, it sits on the site of a historic Salish Indian encampment, and the building is designed to reflect that legacy as well as the heritage and cultures of all Montana Native American tribes. The Ethnobotany Garden contains native plants, shrubs, and grasses of the Rocky Mountain West.  Eight stone circles represent diverse ecoregions of Montana and the Native American Tribes that live within them.