About NatSCA

The Natural Sciences Collections Association (NatSCA) is the UK’s organisation for representing Natural Science Collections and the staff that work with them. We are a registered charity (No. 1098156) run by unpaid volunteers elected from our membership.


  • To increase awareness of the scientific and cultural value of Natural History Collections.
  • To raise the standards of care and interpretation of Natural History Collections
  • To facilitate the exchange of information amongst curators and managers of Natural History Collections.
  • To promote the professional views of Natural History curators and conservators.
  • To lobby for better resourcing of Natural History Collections.

We are keen for our members to feel connected with what is going on and we want to hear what you have to say, so please feel free to comment.

If you’re not a member of NatSCA you are welcome to use the resources we make available here, but please consider spending the £20 to join, which will help support our work and will provide you with a hard copy of our journal and discounts when attending our seminars and workshops.

For more information see our page on membership.

7 thoughts on “About NatSCA

  1. Dear Sir
    I am a chemist looking for a UK supply of Pyroxylin, and I was intrigued to see that it was mentioned in a paper by Simon Moore, can you tell me where you get your Pyroxylin from? If there is a charge, please let me know how much.
    Kind regards
    Chris Farnworth


  2. Hi there. I’ve been reading various articles on NatSCA on line. I am not a scientist by trade. I am a published poet, educator and historical researcher living in Windsor, Canada. The Hunterian Collection is something I am delving into at the moment. His connection to T.P. Yeats, esp. It turns out that Yeats was also pals with Dru Drury, a stellar collector of insects and Henry Seymer who was a painter and collector. I have also made an association with Thomas Davies, ( 1737-1812) an artillery officer who lived in turns in Canada, New York State, Plymouth and elsewhere in the UK. He is a renowned landscape painter and contributor to the flora and fauna of early Canada. I am presently working on a full scale biography on Davies. In NatSCA news 4, 2004 there is mention of William Hunter’s Insect collection and in Appendix 2 is attached a list of some of the contributors. On page 10 there is a reference to Blom or Blomfield. I believe this may very well be Thomas Blomfield.
    Blomfield was born in Kent in 1744, the son of a minister. He entered Woolwich as a gentleman cadet in 1758 and became a fire worker in 1759 in the Royal artillery, just a few years behind Davies. He commanded a bomb vessel at Havre, then in 1762 as a lieutenant, he was present at the capture of Martinique. In January 1773, he became a captain lieutenant in the third battalion.
    Then in 1776, he became an aide de camp for Lord Townsend. That same year he was in Quebec under Major General Philips and was actively involved in the building of floating batteries while in the Canadian camp. He went into winter quarters in Quebec. The next year he joined Burgoyne’s army at Ticonderoga and was wounded in the tongue at the battle of Bemis Heights. On January 19th, 1780 he became a Captain in the Royal artillery and was sent back to London as the inspector of artillery at the brass factory.
    He may have had contact with Davies in 1780 when he was ADC for Amherst at Whitehall.
    In 1782 Captain Blomfield was appointed inspector of the Artillery at Woolwich and proofed the ordnance. We know that Blomfield was likely a collector of plants and animals and both men may have shared mutually in this pastime.
    Like Davies, and Blomfield, these fellow soldier engineers and draftsmen, stationed in early outposts became observers and absorbers of scientific information from their natural surroundings. Keen to the fluxes in seasons, the changing landscape and the people and forests surrounding them , they made a lasting contribution to early scientific and military exploration in this country. Another name listed here-Sautier may be an early draftsman, surveyor who spent time in New York.


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