TAIC is managed by the Entomology Team in the Plant Biosecurity & Diagnostics Branch of the Biosecurity Tasmania Division.

The parent agency is Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment (DPIPWE), which includes the previous Tasmanian Department of Agriculture (TDA).

This agency has prime responsibility for biosecurity in the Australian state of Tasmania.

The prime purpose of TAIC is to validate claims to presence/absence of pests for purposes of national and international biosecurity negotiations for trade.

TAIC also serves as a diagnostic and research resource with loans made to bona fide workers.

TAIC has a detailed electronic summary in the Tasmanian Plant Pest Database (TPPD), which is used routinely to compile data inherent in physical specimens and their labels.

TPPD also facilitates management of TAIC, for example retrieval of specimens on slides and in vials that are not stored in taxonomic arrangement.

Key fields of TPPD data that derives from specimens in TAIC is supplied to Australian Plant Pest Database, which is viewable through Atlas of Living Australia.

A history of the collection is available on request from the collection contacts as a PDF file (T.D. Semmens, 1999, Leas’s Legacy, Department of Primary Industries, Water and Environment, GPO Box 44A, Hobart, Tasmania 7001, 64 pages).

Besides specimen-based records, TPPD also contains about 30,000 records of ‘pest’ occurrences (in the broadest sense) in Tasmania derived from diagnostic reports by the Entomology Team back to 1965 and from 1500 publications that mention particular taxa occurring in Tasmania. These records are not uploaded to ALA via APPD because they are not directly linked to a specimen.

The main collection is housed at New Town Laboratories in Hobart in a room maintained at 17ºC. Naphthalene was removed from the collection in 2012. Pinned specimens undergo freezing once a year in drawers within plastic bags. Ethanol vials are checked annually. The collection includes 80,000 pinned mounts, 15,000 ethanol vials and 16,000 slides. Small annex collections are held at two regional diagnostic laboratories operated by the Entomology Team.

The collection was established in 1899 and continues to the present.

Taxonomic range

TAIC has an agricultural focus but includes considerable material from forestry, wildlife and cave surveys of which some is unsorted.

TAIC contains mostly Tasmanian material but some international and mainland Australian specimens are held.

The oldest specimens date from 1895.

Kingdoms covered include: Animalia.

The Tasmanian Agricultural Insect Collection includes members from the following taxa:
Entomology, Arachnida and a few Gastropoda (excluding Nematoda)..

Geographic range

Primarily Tasmania, minor mainland Australia and International accessions.

Australian states covered include: Primarily Tasmania..

Number of specimens in the collection

The estimated number of specimens in the Tasmanian Agricultural Insect Collection is 350,000.

Of these 80,000 are databased. This represents 22.9 % of the collection.

Click the Records & Statistics tab to access those database records that are available through the atlas.


The Tasmanian Agricultural Insect Collection contains these significant collections:

  • Arthur Lea collection

Metadata last updated on 2015-07-17 12:46:33.0

Digitised records available through the Atlas

The Tasmanian Agricultural Insect Collection has an estimated 350,000 specimens.
The collection has databased 22.9 % of these (80,000 records).

No database records for this collection can be accessed through the Atlas of Living Australia.

No records are available for viewing in the Atlas.

Images from this collection