Professor Andrzej Myrcha Natural Science Centre
ul. Ciołkowskiego 1J
Tel: (85) 745 73 22
Tours can be self-guided or with a guide.
Mondays – Fridays: 9 am – 3 pm
Saturdays: 10 am – 2 pm
Director: Anna Matwiejuk PhD
Staff: Janusz Kupryjanowicz PhD, Wiesław Mikucki MSc
The Professor Andrzej Myrcha Natural Science Centre in Białystok was established at the Institute of Biology by the Senate of the University of Białystok on 29 September 1999 and ofcially launched on 26 October 1999. It organized five exhibitions in the 230 sq. metres of exhibition space. Based on a resolution dated 7 July 2004, the senate transformed it into an interfaculty entity under the name Professor Andrzej Myrcha Natural Science Museum which, as a result of a resolution dated 17 April 2013, was renamed the Professor Andrzej Myrcha Natural Science Centre
which operates under the supervision of the university’s Institute of Biology. Since June 2015, the centre has been located in a new building on the campus of the University of Białystok, at ul. Ciołkowskiego 1J, where it is home to 11 permanent and two temporary exhibitions as well as two educational paths on the 750 sq. metres of exhibition space. The centre offers museum lessons and educational workshops for schools. Its didactic activities are complemented by talks, lectures, slideshows and multimedia presentations. As at June 2020, the centre had a total of 5,171 exhibits which had been collected since 1980. These include taxidermic exhibits of local animals and animals from the polar region, preserved tropical insects, animals – primarily invertebrates – from subtropical seas, fossils, minerals and rocks from all over the world, as well as photographs and drawings of the fiora and fauna from various places across the globe.
The centre has a unique collection of fossilized penguin bones consisting of 1,147 specimens dating from the Eocene from the La Meseta formation on Seymour Island (in the Antarctic) amassed by professors Andrzej Myrcha, Andrzej Tatur and Andrzej Gaździcki in the 1980s and 1990s. Based on the collection, five new species of fossil penguins were
described. All the holotypes are tarsometatarsal sections of the penguins’ feet. Prof. Piotr Jadwiszczak is the curator of the collection. The collection has inspired more than a dozen scientific publications, five masters’ dissertations, one doctoral thesis and one habilitation treatise. The scientific collections also include collections of modern and fossil
arthropods. The main collection, ʽPolish Spiders’, is included in the IMBIO database. It comprises approx. 10,000 specimens and 600 spider species from Poland. The collection of ʽPalaeogenic Arthropods’ is made up of inclusions of arachnids and insects in Baltic, Dominican and Mexican amber. Nine new species of Eocene and Miocene beetles were described on the basis of this collection. Janusz Kupryjanowicz amassed both collections and is currently their curator.
Wiesław Mikucki MSc