Holdings of Birds collected in Belize

WCS Gallon Jug galljug at BTL.NET
Tue Feb 4 16:46:47 CST 1997

Curatorial folks...

We are revising a paper on the status of ornithology in Belize for
publication ASAP.  Editor needs it back by March 1!

In compiling data for the government of Belize we created the Belize
biodiversity Information System.  We have most major museum collection data
in the database, but not all have agreed to repatriate data from collections
made in Belize.  Different issue which I will not address here.  I am sure
there are small, but important holdings which may have escaped notice.

What I need is simple listing of holdings and museum name so we can list
table of where specimens are located. =B1 what ever number is convenient,
<100, 5, >3,000 etc.

Ie. Ipswich University College Museum of Zoology. 12 bird specimens. =20

It would be nice if there was a rough set of dates from when collections
were made.  1948, 1982-1986 or what ever. =20

I do not need tag or any data simply listing of approximate holdings.

Ideally this information should have been re-patriated to the host country
shortly after collections were made, or at least after determinations of
species were at some future time. In a meeting with the head of the
Conservation Division of the Forest Department it was made clear that in
most cases collectors have not followed the spirit, if not the letter of
permit conditions.  Most never send either published reports or simple
inventories of what was collected and where in the country.  This is of
concern to the government offices issuing such permits and increasingly new
restrictions are being added to such permits which may issued in the future.
Although this issue relates to the collector to whom permits were issued and
not the curatorial staff or museum holding said specimens it is up to the
museum to "do the right thing" and assist with such repatriation.

Thanks for your time and space.  Reply directly so not to clutter list.
Bruce W. Miller
Associate Conservation Zoologist

Tropical Forest and Reserve Planning Project
   Belize Biodiversity Information System
      Assessing Biodiversity Through Science
          Wildlife Conservation Society
              Gallon Jug, Belize
galljug at

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