The Australian Tropical Herbarium (CNS) is a joint venture between James Cook University (JCU), the Centre for Australian National Biodiversity Research (CANBR) (- jointly owned by CSIRO and Department of Environment (DoE)), and the Queensland Department of Science, Information Technology and Innovation (DSITI).

CNS is a purpose-built herbarium formed in 2008 as an amalgamation of the following collections:

  • QRS - The Australian National Herbarium - previously housed in Atherton.
  • MBA - Queensland Herbarium - previously housed in Mareeba.
  • JCT (in part) - a part of the James Cook University Herbarium - the Townsville collection.

The Australian Tropical Herbarium (CNS) serves as both the north Queensland node of the Queensland Herbarium (BRI) and the north Australian node of the Australian National Herbarium (CANB).

The collection was established in 1971 and continues to the present.

Taxonomic range

Existing collections of all vascular plant groups. Developing collections of algae, bryophytes and fungi.

Kingdoms covered include: Fungi and Plantae.

Geographic range

Australia 's tropics, especially northeastern Australian rainforests; related plant groups of Papua New Guinea, Pacific, and southeast Asia.

Australian states covered include: Queensland.

Number of specimens in the collection

The estimated number of specimens in the Australian Tropical Herbarium is 180,000.

Of these 180,000 are databased. This represents 100.0 % of the collection.

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


The Australian Tropical Herbarium contains these significant collections:

  • Atherton Forestry Office in 1994
  • University of Queensland Herbarium (BRIU) - rainforest specimens
  • Australian Rain Forest Seedlings
  • Alick Dockrill orchid collection
  • Wet collection of rain forest species mainly flowers & fruits - c. 14000 jars
  • DNA / frozen tissue bank of tropical Australian flora - c. 5000 samples
  • North Queensland Naturalists' club (CAIRNS) - Incorporated into QRS in 1971, includes the collections of Hugo Flecker
  • James Cook University Herbarium (JCT) - In part in 2007
  • Queensland Herbarium - Mareeba (MBA) - MBA in 2007
  • Australian National Herbarium - Atherton (QRS) - QRS in 2007
  • Australian Rain Forest Tree Collection
  • Australian Rain Forest Vine Collection

Usage statistics

Metadata last updated on 2016-05-23 09:05:16.0

Digitised records available through the Atlas

The Australian Tropical Herbarium has an estimated 180,000 specimens.
The collection has databased 100.0 % of these (180,000 records).

Looking up... the number of records that can be accessed through the Atlas of Living Australia Click to view all records for the Australian Tropical Herbarium

No records are available for viewing in the Atlas.

Images from this collection