Nearctic Spider Database: Species Descriptions Pages

David Shorthouse dps1 at UALBERTA.CA
Wed Jan 25 11:00:36 CST 2006

Hello folks,

    Not long ago, I initiated  an out-of-pocket "Nearctic Spider Database"
with the goal of consolidating specimen records across private and
institutional collections in Canada, the US, Greenland, Bermuda, and parts
of Mexico. The outputs include searchable maps, species lists, among other
interesting views. Specimen searches may also be conducted and the curator
responsible for the holding may be contacted via formatted email address
links. The nomenclature is dynamically coordinated using Norman Platnick's
(AMNH) World Spider Catalog. I mirror Norm's nomenclature when he
periodically posts updates to his catalog.

    In addition to the outputs one typically sees with these on-line
biodiversity databases, I also have species descriptions pages that include
real-time seasonality charts, descriptions of males & females with images,
all taxonomic references since original description, and finally, a citation
to credit the contributing author of the page. I am more than happy to
accept species descriptions text and/or images. Instructions for doing so
are included on every species description page. For an example visit the
page for FAM: ARANEIDAE, Larinioides cornutus (Clerck, 1757):

    If you happen to be developing a spider collection database, know of
someone who is, or would like to keep a list of these pages for your own
purposes, I schedule the production of a "first-of-the-month" tab-delimited
text file containing all these page links. You are also more than welcome to
incorporate these links into any web site if you so desire. Naturally and
alternatively, individual species can be searched from hierarchical menus
within the database website. The columns in this text file are: Family,
Genus, Species, Author, and URL (note: the Species column may also contain
subspecies). This text file can be downloaded from the following link:

Thanks in advance for any comments or suggestions,

David P. Shorthouse
Department of Biological Sciences
CW-403, Biological Sciences Centre
University of Alberta
Edmonton, AB   T6G 2E9
Phone: 1-780-492-3080
mailto:dps1 at
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