Databasing Linsenmaier's Collection

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Databasing Linsenmaier's Collection

Postby Euchroeus » 15 Dec 2011 16:41

Walter Linsenmaier's Chrysididae Collection is undoubtedly one of the most important collection in the World. It can be considered as the most important for number of types, taxa and specimens conserved.

Thanks to the curator Denise Wyniger and the support of the GBIF Project, I could database the whole collection. The collection includes 56.617 specimens, belonging to 2410 taxa; 1740 taxa are identified, 240 are indicated as 'new taxa' and 430 are undetermined. Particularly interesting is the total number of typical specimens: 4180, belonging to 752 taxa, with 648 primary types (holotypes and syntypes).

Soon all the data will be available at the GBIF web-site, and some publications are already planned for the next future.

Over the years I had the opportunity to reorder Linsenmaier's manuscripts, which include many descriptions of new species not yet published and two fully Revisions ever published.
Here I attach one of the hundreds drawings that I found.

Meantime a revision of the type has been done. Linsenmaier described more than 700 taxa. Not all the types were housed in his private collection, but many types are deposited in other private or public collections, as for example the British Museum of Natural History in London, the Museo de Zoologia da Universidade in São Paulo, or the Natural History Museum in San Francisco.

Furthermore Linsenmaier labeled 839 specimens as holotypes, allotypes and paratypes but he didn't described them. The identification of the types described by Linsenmaier has been particularly difficult and my interpretation will not be exempt from criticism. I will try to justify all the cases with the help of the Code. During the revisional work I noticed the existence of several different cases, that will be discussed in a separate publication. Linsenmaier also labeled many specimens as 'type' after the publication of the taxa, which has led to misunderstanding, misinterpretation, and confusion. Addictionally, the label informations did not often match with the informations given in the original description.

The first publication (a detailed paper on my work) will be published in spring 2011. I'll write again when new data will be available.

Here a couple of pictures of some beautiful types.
Paolo Rosa -
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