Digitization protocol for scoring reproductive phenology from herbarium specimens of seed plants

March 1st, 2018
By Gitzendanner, Matt

Yost, J. M., P. W. Sweeney, E. Gilbert, G. Nelson, R. Guralnick, A. S. Gallinat, E. R. Ellwood, N. Rossington, C. G. Willis, S. D. Blum, R. L. Walls, E. M. Haston, M. W. Denslow, C. M. Zohner, A. B. Morris, B. J. Stucky, J. R. Carter, D. G. Baxter, K. Bolmgren, E. G. Denny, E. Dean, K. D. Pearson, C. C. Davis, B. D. Mishler, P. S. Soltis, and S. J. Mazer. n.d. Digitization protocol for scoring reproductive phenology from herbarium specimens of seed plants. Appl Plant Sci [View on publisher’s site]

Abstract

Premise of the Study

Herbarium specimens provide a robust record of historical plant phenology (the timing of seasonal events such as flowering or fruiting). However, the difficulty of aggregating phenological data from specimens arises from a lack of standardized scoring methods and definitions for phenological states across the collections community.

Methods and Results

To address this problem, we report on a consensus reached by an iDigBio working group of curators, researchers, and data standards experts regarding an efficient scoring protocol and a data-sharing protocol for reproductive traits available from herbarium specimens of seed plants. The phenological data sets generated can be shared via Darwin Core Archives using the Extended MeasurementOrFact extension.

Conclusions

Our hope is that curators and others interested in collecting phenological trait data from specimens will use the recommendations presented here in current and future scoring efforts. New tools for scoring specimens are reviewed.

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