Collection numbers

Barry M. OConnor bmoc at UMICH.EDU
Sun May 23 13:25:22 CDT 1999

At 10:42 AM -0500 5/23/1999, Clifford Wetmore wrote:

>   This is about the worst possible use of collection numbers. Why have to
>enter 8 digits and create more errors when you only need 4-5. The date is on
>the label anyway.
>In our computer databases I can order collections by real collection numbers
>and check for entry errors and also get the collector's itinerary. This
>won't work with the date included in the number.
I use date-based collection numbers, but with the numbers reversed, i.e.
990522001.  These can then be sorted in my database by date which also
gives an itinerary.  I also give the same "date" number for parasite
collections from hosts from a single field trip.  I also capture both field
number and museum catalog number for the host and arrange the collection by
field number before entering my own catalog numbers for the parasite
collections.  Thus, all parasite collections from a single field trip have
the same "date" portion of the catalog number, but if that collection data
is subsorted by host field number, I also get the itinerary.

Barry M. OConnor                phone: (734) 763-4354
Museum of Zoology               FAX: (734) 763-4080
University of Michigan          e-mail: bmoc at
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1079  USA

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