Identification forums


Common frog, Rana temporaria

Welcome to the Museum's identification forum where amateur naturalists and experts can ask questions about all aspects of UK biodiversity. You can share identification tips on UK plants, animals, rocks and minerals, and Museum experts will help to answer your queries and identify your specimens.

Whether you've found a strange looking insect in your garden, or uncovered a fossil on the beach, this is the place to find out more about it. Simply choose the relevant forum below and ask your question.

Identification forums
  • Clouded yellow butterfly
    Bug forum

    Ask questions and share identification tips about all types of British bugs, from bees to beetles and wasps to woodlice.  Museum insect-experts are on hand to answer your questions.

  • Bladder wrack, Fucus vesiculosus
    On the seashore identification forum

    Discuss seashore life and ask the experts for help identifying your finds including seaweeds, crabs, shells and animal bones.  What unusual life might you find?

  • Shepherd's crown echinoid, Micraster coranguinum (Leske)
    Fossils and rocks identification forum

    Fossils are a key to finding out about species that lived in the past. If you find a rock or fossil you would like to know more about, post your question here and our experts may be able to help.

  • Field vole bones from an owl pellet
    Bones, teeth and skulls identification forum

    It can be quite a challenge to identify which part of the skeleton a bone belongs to, but our experts may be able to help.  If you find a bone, tooth or skull then ask your question here.

  • Common frog, Rana temporia
    All animal life identification forum

    Animal life is very diverse and includes everything from snails to snakes, elephants to echinoderms, badgers to bitterns, and squirrels to sun-stars.  Ask Museum experts for help identifying them.

  • Silverfish, Lepisma saccharina
    Your habitat - home and garden species identification forum

    We share our homes, gardens and local areas with all sorts of creatures from the natural world. Find out what wildlife you could be living with and let us help you identify it.

  • Cowslips, Primula veris, in the wildlife garden at the Museum
    Plant identification forum

    Post your photos here and ask questions about British plants, from seaweeds to sundews and bluebells to bracken. Museum experts will help identify them for you.

  • Vegetation from La Amistad Binational Park in Central America
    Foreign finds identification forum

    Holidays or visits abroad bring new opportunities to observe nature, and to look for species you might not find at home. Tell us about the interesting creatures you discover outside the UK.

Latest posts in the identification forums

  • Re: Sycamore tree identification

    Thanks Lucy, the links were very informative. I have been out this morning and found some disintegra...
    Sun, 19 Apr 2015 10:46:27

  • Re: What is this?!

    That's alright and many thanks for letting me know! This is going to be interesting to watch ð&a...
    Sat, 18 Apr 2015 14:59:27

  • Re: Sycamore tree identification

    Yes, you are correct in suspecting they are not conifer seedlings, they don't produce twin seed leav...
    Sat, 18 Apr 2015 14:28:54

  • Re: Sycamore tree identification

    Hello Lucy, that's a very good explanation in layman's terms, thank you. Yes, I admit that wasn't th...
    Sat, 18 Apr 2015 14:13:06

  • Re: Sycamore tree identification

    Hi Gary, The atlas cedar flowers in the autumn and has separate male and female flowers on the ...
    Sat, 18 Apr 2015 13:36:30

  • Re: Sycamore tree identification

    Hello Lucy, thanks for your reply. Yes I know what you mean regarding the disintegrating cones, as t...
    Sat, 18 Apr 2015 09:54:59

  • Re: What is this?!

    Hi Holly,First I have an abject apology! The eggs are from the Lackey moth, not the vapourer. I have...
    Sat, 18 Apr 2015 09:40:58

  • Re: What is this?!

    They have started to cocoon together, how long will they be like this for?
    Fri, 17 Apr 2015 21:38:59

Identification experts

A team of Museum scientists who run the Identification and Advisory Service will help to answer your identification queries. They work in the new Angela Marmont Centre for UK Biodiversity.

Their special interests include fossils, rocks, plants, insects and other creatures.