The museum holds large and important collections of zoological, botanical and geological material. In numerical terms this is the largest part of the collection with 150,000 specimens. It is the 6th largest collection of natural history in Scotland.
The richness of the collection is largely thanks to the founding of the Perthshire Society of Natural Science in 1867 and the opening of the Perthshire Natural History Museum in 1881.
A major focus for the collections has always been to collect and preserve specimens and information covering the wildlife and geology of Perthshire and Kinross-shire. Locally collected specimens alert us to the changing nature of our environment. The historical collections also have considerable material from elsewhere in Scotland and Britain and from overseas. They demonstrate the history of systematic collecting and the study of natural history from the 18th Century onwards.
Several of the collections are important with some containing type specimens that are of international importance for the naming of living and fossil, animals and plants. Some of the more important collections and star items are listed below.