News Story

Winter Taxonomic Camp

PREVIOUS NEWS

NEXT NEWS

12 December, 2011

Sarah Spaulding

Potapova, Lowe, Spaulding, Manoylov, Hamilton, Edlund, Beals and Furey joined together for an intensive work session at Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia (ANSP) in December 2011.

“Winter Taxonomic Camp” in Philadephia might sound dubious to some, but diatomists seem to thrive on intensive sessions of dedication to taxonomy, in any season. Several contributors were invited to participate in the workshop, with the goal of utilizing the collection, literature, and gathered expertise to clarify species of the US freshwater diatom flora. Each contributor had already been involved in developing content for the project. For this intensive, participants arrived at ANSP with a list of taxa to resolve and assemble into taxon pages. While some species are more problematic than others, our plan was to develop taxon pages where we could and lay out the issues to resolve for the more difficult taxa. We started with the 350 most common species in US rivers and streams for inclusion in the database, as well as those species that are often confused with common ones.

We discussed arriving at consistent use of terms to describe structures of the diatom valve. As these terms are defined, they will appear in the site glossary. Lineolate striae, fibulae and terminal raphe fissures were discussed and we made a plan for editing for consistent application of terms.

Thanks to Marina for the aromatic coffee and hot soup to keep everyone happy. Jen provided valuable type slides, original literature and good cheer.

Stay posted as the species pages are reviewed over the next several weeks. The next taxonomic workshop is scheduled for January 2012 and is a session to focus on species in the genus Neidium.