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Development of an integrated paleontological database and web site of Florissant collections, taxonomy, and publications

Herbert W. Meyer, Matthew S. Wasson and Brent J. Frakes
Development of an integrated paleontological database and web site of Florissant collections, taxonomy, and publications (in Paleontology of the upper Eocene Florissant Formation, Colorado, Herbert W. Meyer (editor) and Dena M. Smith (editor))
Special Paper - Geological Society of America (2008) 435: 159-177

Abstract

A detailed survey of collections and publications for the Florissant fossil beds (Colorado, USA) forms the basis for developing a new relational database and Web site that documents information that had become widely scattered following 130 years of scientific study at Florissant. More than 1700 species that remain valid, mostly of plants, insects, and spiders, had been described in more than 300 publications, and these published specimens had been dispersed among -15 museums. Some of these specimens were not well documented in original publications and many of the type specimens had never been illustrated. Catalog data were compiled on-site at museums, specimens were photographed, and all of the publications referring to Florissant specimens were located. Taxonomic classification of the fossils was updated to modern concepts. A relational database incorporates the data into five core tables for specimens, bibliography, references to specimens in publication, taxonomy, and images. The database allows for complex searches to interrelate these categories, enabling new research and facilitating collections management. Examples show that the largest number of scientific publications and new species descriptions appeared from 1890 to 1920 and that most of the originally described insect species, but only about half of the plant species, still remain valid and unrevised. Digital images of the fossils and digital files for pre-1923 publications form an archive that is linked to the data records. A Web site makes the database publicly accessible for technical use, and also provides a less complex application for the layperson as well as a new college-level curriculum.


ISSN: 0072-1077
EISSN: 2331-219X
Coden: GSAPAZ
Serial Title: Special Paper - Geological Society of America
Serial Volume: 435
Title: Development of an integrated paleontological database and web site of Florissant collections, taxonomy, and publications
Title: Paleontology of the upper Eocene Florissant Formation, Colorado
Author(s): Meyer, Herbert W.Wasson, Matthew S.Frakes, Brent J.
Author(s): Meyer, Herbert W.editor
Author(s): Smith, Dena M.editor
Affiliation: National Park Service, Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument, Florissant, CO, United States
Affiliation: National Park Service, Florissant Fossil Beds National Monument, Florissant, CO, United States
Pages: 159-177
Published: 2008
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
ISBN: 978-0-8137-2435-5
References: 35
Accession Number: 2008-109812
Categories: General paleontology
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Annotation: Includes appendix
Illustration Description: illus. incl. 3 tables, 1 plate
N38°55'00" - N38°55'00", W105°16'00" - W105°16'00"
Secondary Affiliation: University of Colorado at Boulder, USA, United StatesChevron North America Exploration and Production Company, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 200840
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