A large effort is underway in the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences’ Section of Research and Collections to database and georeference its specimen collections. The goal of this project is to allow rapid and remote accessibility of the museum’s collections to researchers, resource managers, the public, and other user groups across the region and world. For overviews of these collections, click here
The Amphibians and Reptiles, Fishes, and Invertebrates Databases are now online (below), and other units will follow soon. The database web pages are highly capable search tools with a variety of features. The Full Search interface accommodates searches on any combination of up to 20 fields, including common names of species. Several fields are constrained by dictionary-driven dropdown menus. Help menu links in both English and Spanish accompany every field. There is also a Quick Search feature that performs wild-card searches on any data string entered. Results may be viewed in two formats, a Summary Grid view or a Catalog view. A Google-enabled mapping function that instantly maps up to 4,000 records yielded by a search is currently available on the Fishes Database and will eventually be available on the others. Collections data are updated monthly to the web host site. Due to the sensitive nature of occurrence information for some taxa (e.g., commercially valuable species that are threatened by overharvesting), curators of some units have elected to display only general locality data, preferring that users contact them directly for more detailed information.
This project is partially supported by the National Science Foundation.
For more information, contact the museum’s Database/GIS Manager Ben Norton (Ben.Norton@naturalsciences.org) or see:
Hogue, G. M. and J. A. Raine. 2006. From the ledger to the web: setting 21st Century documentation standards for the collections of the North Carolina State Museum of Natural Sciences. Collection Forum 21(1-2): 175-191.
Search Amphibians and Reptiles Database
Amphibians and Reptiles Database will be participating in HerpNeT
beginning in 2012.
Search and Map Fishes Database
Search Invertebrates Database