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The Sam Noble Museum ornithology collection was established with the museum in 1899. These 26,400 specimens carry significant importance for research, exhibits and educational programming.

The collection contains specimens from 33 recognized avian orders and 179 recognized bird families. Oklahoma is well represented in the collection, but we also house significant holdings of specimens from Mexico, Texas and Thailand. Well-represented families include Fringillidae, Laridae and Accipitridae.

With over 15,300 study skins and 6,500 skeletons, the collection is one of the largest in the central United States. Other highlights include over 950 mounts, 630 spread wings, 490 nests, 3,800 sets of eggs and an extensive library of books and journals.

The curator, professional staff, students, volunteers and associates are continuing a tradition of research and collection that dates to the founding of the museum and the legacies established by Margaret Morse Nice, George Miksch Sutton and Gary D. Schnell.