The library of the ornithological section is the biggest branch library of the ZFMK by far.
Besides more than 6.000 monographs in even more volumes it comprises over 220 mere ornithological periodicals as well as more than 32.000 reprints.
The greatest part of the ornithological library today is located in the 2. floor of the main building which also houses the permanent exhibitions. Here bookshelves of more than 600 running meters contain nearly all ornithological monographs and recent periodicals.
The reprints are housed in separate file rooms; the numerous bibliophilic "treasures" are separately locked in different places.
The eldest opus in the portfolio of the ornithological library is Vol. 3 of Conrad Gesners "Historiae animalium" - "De avium natura" - from the year 1555.
Due to Alexander Koenig's geographical focus monographs on African birdlife as well as on birds of the northern palearctic and the arctical region form the basis of the ornithological library. The different fields of research of the succeeding ornithologists made for a greater range of themes in the book stock. During the last decades enhanced attention was turned to the target of covering as many geographical regions, systematic groups and ornithological fields of reference as possible.
Furthermore, numerous sound files of bird songs on records and compact discs belong to the library. They are housed in the sound lab of the institute.
The whole ornithological literature can be searched in an OPAC - unfortunately at present only via intranet of the ZFMK. An accessibility of the OPAC via internet is long planned.