Seems we’ve started discussing this topic early this year. On a few points I must disagree and clear up some confusion. In the US (unless the laws have changed),  

1)      For donations with an estimated value claimed by the donor to be under $5000, no independent appraiser is required by IRS.  If the estimated value is over $5000, an independent appraiser is required by IRS  and an IRS 8283 form filed.

2)      Checking dealer prices is only one way to determine if there is a market for specimens! Have any of you ever been to the insect fairs in Europe?  Everything has a market value, even unmounted and unidentified materials.

3)      “…the cost of the pin may be counted”. True. If you had receipts for such supplies or what you paid for the specimens, you could use that value also.





Paul E. Skelley, Ph.D., C.P.M.

Entomology Section Administrator

Florida State Collection of Arthropods

Division of Plant Industry/Entomology

Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services


Assistant Head Editor: Insecta Mundi


Desk (352) 395-4678

Fax (352) 395-4614

Receptionist (352) 395-4700

[log in to unmask]


The Doyle Conner Building

1911 SW 34th St

Gainesville, Florida 32608 USA


P.O.Box 147100

Gainesville, Florida 32614-7100, USA


Please note that Florida has a broad public records law (Chapter 119, Florida Statutes).

Most written communications to or from state employees are public records obtainable

by the public upon request. Emails sent to me at this email address may be considered

public and will only be withheld from disclosure if deemed confidential pursuant to the

laws of the State of Florida.




From: Entomological Collections Network Listserve [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Barry OConnor
Sent: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 11:15 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: valuation of insect collections


Each country's laws/rules are different. For institutions in the USA, this issue has been discussed many times on this list. Bottom line is that specimens must be appraised by an independent appraiser (not the donor nor the recipient), and the valuation must be made on the basis of "fair market value". This can only be determined by checking dealer's price lists,  not by any formula. If a species is not for sale anywhere, it has no market value, thus, no tax deduction. I suppose if the specimen is on a pin, the cost of the pin may be counted.

Anyone with a different view, please let us know.

All the best! - Barry


On Tue, Feb 28, 2017 at 10:28 AM, Jason Gibbs <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

We’ve been using this handy form from the Canadian National Collection to process our donations.




Jason Gibbs

Assistant Professor

Curator, J. B. Wallis / R. E. Roughley Museum of Entomology

University of Manitoba

Department of Entomology

12 Dafoe Rd., Animal Science/Entomology Bldg. Rm. 213

Winnipeg, MB, Canada

R3T 2N2

Phone: 204-474-7485




-So many mites, so little time!

Barry M. OConnor                    
Professor  & Curator             
Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology            

University of Michigan                  phone: 734-763-4354            
1109 Geddes Ave.                          fax: 734-763-4080
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1079          e-mail: [log in to unmask]