Max Caspers

Max Caspers

Naturalis has an enormous scientific collection - around 43 million objects - which is the result of centuries of collecting, research and careful management. I am head of the collection managers, each of whom is responsible for a part of that collection. I come from archeology myself and have enjoyed working here for years as collection manager of entomology. Now, from a different role and with a great team, I can further deepen our collection and make it accessible for research and exhibition.


management, conservation, science, accessibility, collection, volunteers, history

Max Caspers

Head of Collection Management

The department

The department consists of 18 collection managers, each of whom is responsible for a taxonomic part of the collection. Their backgrounds are diverse; from archaeologists to biologists and heritage specialists. Based on their broad collection knowledge, they take care of all plants, animals, rocks, fossils and archives in our care.

Our collection is used by many (international) researchers for various topics, such as ecology, phylogenetics or fauna. An important goal is taxonomy: understanding and describing the enormous diversity of species that occur in the city and nature.

My department is in daily contact with these researchers to facilitate use of the collection. We also work together with colleagues and volunteers to preserve this heritage for future generations. Use and conservation can also get in the way of each other, which makes every decision unique and interesting.

Lethocerus sp.
Martin collectie


A selection of the topics I am currently working on.

The holotype of a cicada species
August 24th, 2022

True bugs in the picture

This is it: Pseudaufidus trifasciatus , a cicada species described in 1957 by entomologist and curator H. C. Blöte from Leiden. The cicada depicted above is not just any specimen of that species, but it is the so-called holotype: The specimen used when the…
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Caspers et al. 2019. Butterflies in bags - permanent storage of Lepidoptera in glassine envelopes

Schneider et al. 2021. Taxonomic Revision of Eastern Part of Western Palaearctic Cordulegaster

Schneider et al. 2022. The Oracle of Delphi—a molecular phylogenetic approach to Greek Cordulegaster Leach in Brewster, 1815 (Odonata: Anisoptera: Cordulegastridae)

Greeff et al. 2022. Sharing taxonomic expertise between natural history collections using image recognition

In the

Short intro

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