[Taxacom] Thousands of holotype burn

Kenneth Kinman kinman at hotmail.com
Mon Sep 3 21:03:43 CDT 2018


Hi Stephen,

        I'm not sure I would say that such losses (holotypes vs. non-type specimens) are equally tragic.  Especially in cases where a holotype is the only known specimen (or all the non-type specimens were also in the same museum).

      In such cases, if the only remaining specimens are digital photographs, can such a photograph be made the neotype?  More importantly, the question is whether most of the holotypes of that museum had good diagnostic digital photos stored elsewhere.


________________________________
From: Taxacom <taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu> on behalf of Stephen Thorpe <stephen_thorpe at yahoo.co.nz>
Sent: Sunday, September 2, 2018 11:01 PM
To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu; MichaelIvie
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Thousands of holotype burn

Loss of holotypes isn't really any more tragic than loss of non-type specimens (i.e. both are equally tragic). Neotypes can be designated where necessary, so that isn't a big deal. Events such as this illustrate the importance of having good diagnostic digital photos of specimens (stored on multiple servers). Specimens cannot be duplicated, but digital images of specimens can be. Images might not give us all that we might want, but they give us a lot more than a pile of smoking charcoal. All specimens in all natural history collections will be reduced to dust some day, it is only a matter of time.

Stephen

--------------------------------------------
On Mon, 3/9/18, Ivie, Michael <mivie at montana.edu> wrote:

 Subject: [Taxacom] Thousands of holotype burn
 To: "taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu" <taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu>
 Received: Monday, 3 September, 2018, 3:34 PM

 This might well be the largest loss of
 primary types ever in a single event, if the reported total
 loss proves true.  Thousands of types in the
 Cerambycidae alone.
 Our hearts go out to our Brazilian
 colleagues.  Horrible event, please no negative
 comments while this tragedy is so fresh.

 Mike


 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-45392668?ns_source=facebook&ocid=socialflow_facebook&ns_campaign=bbcnews&ns_mchannel=social
[https://ichef.bbci.co.uk/images/ic/1024x576/p06k6cxh.jpg]<https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-45392668?ns_source=facebook&ocid=socialflow_facebook&ns_campaign=bbcnews&ns_mchannel=social>

Fire ravages 200-year-old Brazil museum<https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-latin-america-45392668?ns_source=facebook&ocid=socialflow_facebook&ns_campaign=bbcnews&ns_mchannel=social>
www.bbc.co.uk
The National Museum of Brazil, home to some 20m items spanning centuries, is devastated.



 __________________________________________________
 Michael A. Ivie, Ph.D., F.R.E.S.

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