[Taxacom] Species Pages - where are the online descriptions?
rogerhyam at mac.com
Sun Feb 1 04:58:47 CST 2009
I am looking for websites that have good "Species Pages". By species
page I mean (and this is my definition) a page that contains a
description of the species and not a page that simply lists the
nomenclature associated with the acceptance of a name. You could send
the URL of a species page to a student who didn't know what the
organism was and they could use it to confirm the identity of a
An example of what I think of as a species page is the Fishbase page
for Gadus morhua (Atlantic Cod):
There is a lot of information on this page and a description of the
organism can be gleaned from it.
This FloraBase page is another example:
Very brief but attempts to define the taxon.
Wikipedia has a good page for cod but there isn't a good taxon
description so it is a borderline species page
Catalogue of Life has a goal of producing a page for every species and
it aims to do this by combining pre-existing data I believe but I
wonder where this data is.
Their page on badger comes from Arkive (http://www.arkive.org/) which
is an imaging database http://eol.org/pages/328046 and their page on
cod comes from Fishbase http://eol.org/pages/206692
Pages I don't consider Species Pages are:
Catalogue of Life has a page that comes from Fishbase but that chucks
out the "useful" information and only maintains the nomenclature.
The ITIS page is similar to the CoL page
Likewise Fauna Europaea page for Meles meles (Badger) lacks a
description because it is a nomenclatural database.
I'd like to build a list of sites offering "real" species page
information - with descriptions. At the moment it seems like the major
source of these pages are electronic versions of the literature. We
have good descriptions in sources like eFloras.org http://www.efloras.org/florataxon.aspx?flora_id=5&taxon_id=242417133
and I hope BHL will be a source. This is a shame as these pages
typically lack large numbers of images and the possibility of
including other media.
I'd be grateful for any suggestions of sites that contain species
pages (as per my definition).
BTW: I'd rather use the term "Taxon Page" as these things could apply
at any rank but there seems to be a consensus to call them Species
Pages no matter what rank they apply to and people are typically
interested in species.
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