Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1523-1739.2004.00233.x
Title: Significance of specimen databases from taxonomic revisions for estimating and mapping the global species diversity of invertebrates and repatriating reliable specimen data
Authors: Meier, R. 
Dikow, T.
Issue Date: Apr-2004
Citation: Meier, R., Dikow, T. (2004-04). Significance of specimen databases from taxonomic revisions for estimating and mapping the global species diversity of invertebrates and repatriating reliable specimen data. Conservation Biology 18 (2) : 478-488. ScholarBank@NUS Repository. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1523-1739.2004.00233.x
Abstract: We argue that the millions of specimen-label records published over the past decades in thousands of taxonomic revisions are a cost-effective source of information of critical importance for incorporating invertebrates into biodiversity research and conservation decisions. More specifically, we demonstrate for a specimen database assembled during a revision of the robber-fly genus Euscelidia (Asilidae, Diptera) how nonparametric species richness estimators (Chao1, incidence-based coverage estimator, second-order jackknife) can be used to (1) estimate global species diversity, (2) direct future collecting to areas that are undersampled and/or likely to be rich in new species, and (3) assess whether the plant-based global biodiversity hotspots of Myers et al. (2000) contain a significant proportion of invertebrates. During the revision of Euscelidia, the number of known species more than doubled, but estimation of species richness revealed that the true diversity of the genus was likely twice as high. The same techniques applied to subsamples of the data indicated that much of the unknown diversity will be found in the Oriental region. Assessing the validity of biodiversity hotspots for invertebrates is a formidable challenge because it is difficult to decide whether species are hotspot endemics, and lists of observed species dramatically underestimate true diversity. Lastly, conservation biologists need a specimen database analogous to GenBank for collecting specimen records. Such a database has a three-fold advantage over information obtained from digitized museum collections: (1) it is shown for Euscelidia that a large proportion of unrevised museum specimens are misidentified; (2) only the specimen lists in revisionary studies cover a wide variety of private and public collections; and (3) obtaining specimen records from revisions is cost-effective.
Source Title: Conservation Biology
URI: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/101665
ISSN: 08888892
DOI: 10.1111/j.1523-1739.2004.00233.x
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