The Natural History Museum, London (NHMUK), has a large Arachnida collection in alcohol. Although the NHMUK follows best-practice in alcohol collections standards, there are still standards that have yet to be agreed upon, e.g., the choice of optimum printer and ink for producing labels. In 2012, I designed a survey to establish how alcohol collections are curated in other institutions around the world. I sent a questionnaire relevant to all collection sizes, materials, and storage spaces to 49 institutions in 36 countries. Responses from 42 institutions indicated: (1) collection size did not determine specific procedure; (2) museums with the largest collections are not restricted to one geographic region; (3) funding was the primary determinant of equipment and storage method, which sometimes resulted in unsuitable conditions; (4) although some methods were similar (e.g., use of ethanol), factors such as materials and equipment among other issues varied widely; (5) several issues are universal, and further research and the development of standards are needed. The results will be used to inform the establishment of further standards at the NHMUK and may also be a useful source of information for other institutions with alcohol collections. Current and future work on collection standards at the NHMUK is discussed.

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Author notes

Associate Editor.—Janet Waddington