The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Systema Dipterorum
Sherborn’s critical influence in getting
information contro...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Diptera - Flies
Beautiful
Milesia Chrysotoxum
Ocyptamus Spilomyia
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Diptera - Flies
• Upper Permian - 250 million years ago
Permotipula
• Upper Tr...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
The Numbers
Count:
Described species 158,453 (+1%)
Estimate:
Total Species 1,5...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Flies = Critical to all of us
Today the issue of
climate change and its
effect...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Diptera - Flies
Important
Aedes Disease transmission
Drosophila - Genetics
All...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Knowledge
Access is by NAMES
Names are the Critical Key
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
USERS:
• People with a Name
– What does it Mean?
• People with a Specimen
– Wh...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
What is it?
What does it do?
Where did it come from?
Is it the next INVASIVE S...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Knowledge
• Growth of
• Access to
– Systematic / taxonomic
– Literature
• Bibl...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
0
20000
40000
60000
80000
100000
120000
140000
160000
180000
200000 1758
1773
...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Growth in number of authors through time
Year of first published description
0...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Knowledge
As the universe of Knowledge grew, workers
subdivide it into more ma...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Systematic / Taxonomic
• All
– Linnaeus – Systema Naturae (1758-
– Gmelin – Sy...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Systematic / Taxonomic
• Catalogs
– Regional
• Osten Sacken – 1858 North Ameri...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Bibliographies / Indexes
• Bibliographies
– Agassiz et alia: Zoology (1848-185...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Sherborn
• Standards - Minimal
– Strickland Code (1842)
• Data: Discovery, Cap...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Sherborn
• Data
– 6 fields for names
– 2 classification levels (genus, order)
...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Sherborn – note1
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Sherborn – note2
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Nomenclators
Builders &
Consolidators
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
TODAY
• Builders
– AnimalBase (Pre 1790)
– Zoological Record
– Systema Diptero...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Systema Dipterorum
• Standards - High
– International Code of Zoological
Nomen...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Systema Dipterorum
• Data
– 16 fields for names
– 16 classification levels (or...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Systema Dipterorum
Today
• number of records:
– 200,603 species names (162,514...
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Systema Dipterorum
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
Thanks
• Schlinger Foundation [2000-- ]
• Species2000 [2010]
• Once, but limit...
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Sherborn: Thompson & Pape - Sherborn’s critical influence in getting information control over a megadiverse group

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The order Diptera (Insecta), flies, is a megadiverse group, representing some 15% or more of the known species of organisms. Scientific names are tags to concepts (hypotheses), called species, by which we organize our knowledge of biodiversity. Our Systema Dipterorum provides an index to all scientific names related to flies, so access to our knowledge about them is readily available. Sherborn more than a century ago attempted to provide such an index to all animal names. He did provide an index to all names published up until and including 1850. We compare our indexes, revealing how standards have changed and the number of names increased. Today, more and better resources are being made available to us, such as the Biodiversity Heritage Library, and our standards are higher (new International Code of Zoological Nomenclature), but regardless of all the change, Sherborn for his time provided an almost perfect (99.9%) index.

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  • On this graph you can see the growth in the number of names and species through time. I have added the average number of species described per year. The early 19. century was very productive due to authors like Meigen and Wiedemann. Then there was an ebbing with only 417 descriptions per year. The pace picked up at the start of the 20. century, which was very productive with 1720 descriptions per year. World War 2 brought an end to this productive phase and since then the average growth is quite stable with 1345 descriptions.
  • Growth in number of authors over time
  • With which we have arrived today. Now, we have the BDWD, currently online as version 8.5. The nomenclator is about 90% done and holds over 191.000 species and 22.500 genus names. Of these 154.000 represent valid species and 11.700 valid genera. The references database includes more than 21.000 references. The nomenclator is a great tool for finding names and is the envy of entomologists working on other groups of insects. It is online available at ‘The Diptera Site’.
  • Sherborn: Thompson & Pape - Sherborn’s critical influence in getting information control over a megadiverse group

    1. 1. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Systema Dipterorum Sherborn’s critical influence in getting information control over a megadiverse group F. Christian Thompson Washington Thomas Pape Copenhagen 28 October 2011 London, England
    2. 2. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Diptera - Flies Beautiful Milesia Chrysotoxum Ocyptamus Spilomyia
    3. 3. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Diptera - Flies • Upper Permian - 250 million years ago Permotipula • Upper Triassic - 225 million years ago Limonidae (1) Bibionidae (1) Procramptonomyiidae (1) Crosaphididae (1) Eoptychopteridae (1) Ancient
    4. 4. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera The Numbers Count: Described species 158,453 (+1%) Estimate: Total Species 1,500,000 (- 66%)
    5. 5. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
    6. 6. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Flies = Critical to all of us Today the issue of climate change and its effect on our World is debated. It is a complex issue that involves many factors, one of which is pollination and our plants. Unfortunately, flies are not properly recognized for their contributions.
    7. 7. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Diptera - Flies Important Aedes Disease transmission Drosophila - Genetics Allograpta - pollination BioControl Dacus - Plant Pests
    8. 8. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Knowledge Access is by NAMES Names are the Critical Key
    9. 9. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera USERS: • People with a Name – What does it Mean? • People with a Specimen – What is it? And then • People with a Problem – What is the cause? And then
    10. 10. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera What is it? What does it do? Where did it come from? Is it the next INVASIVE SPECIES All the answers come from knowing a NAME!
    11. 11. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Knowledge • Growth of • Access to – Systematic / taxonomic – Literature • Bibliographies • Indexes
    12. 12. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera 0 20000 40000 60000 80000 100000 120000 140000 160000 180000 200000 1758 1773 1784 1795 1806 1817 1828 1839 1850 1861 1872 1883 1894 1905 1916 1927 1938 1949 1960 1971 1982 1993 2004 names valid species 68 530 417 1720 969 1345 Growth in number of names and species through time
    13. 13. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Growth in number of authors through time Year of first published description 0 10 20 30 40 50 60 70 1758 1769 1780 1791 1802 1813 1824 1835 1846 1857 1868 1879 1890 1901 1912 1923 1934 1945 1956 1967 1978 1989 2000
    14. 14. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Knowledge As the universe of Knowledge grew, workers subdivide it into more manageable pieces By Group By Time By Geography By People
    15. 15. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Systematic / Taxonomic • All – Linnaeus – Systema Naturae (1758- – Gmelin – Systema Naturae 13th ed (1790) • Entomology – Fabricius – Systema Entomologica (1775) • Diptera – Fabricius – Systema Antliatorum • Regional, etc – Meigen & Wiedemann (1800-1850)
    16. 16. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Systematic / Taxonomic • Catalogs – Regional • Osten Sacken – 1858 North America • Dipterists – 1965-1989 all 6 biotic regions – World • Kertesz (1902-1910) incomplete • Systema Dipterorum (1984-Today)
    17. 17. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Bibliographies / Indexes • Bibliographies – Agassiz et alia: Zoology (1848-1854) – Hagen: Entomology (1862-1863) <1864 – Derksen & Scheiding (1965-1975) 1864-1900 – Evenhuis (1997) Diptera <1930 – And various regional and taxon bibliographies • Indexes – Sherborn (1902-1932) <1850 – Zoological Record (1864-) – Generic names • Agassiz (1846/7) • Marshall (1873) • Scudder (1882-1884) • Neave (1920-1993 printed) • Schulze et alia (1920-1935)
    18. 18. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Sherborn • Standards - Minimal – Strickland Code (1842) • Data: Discovery, Capture, Management = Manual • Literature – Accessibility – Limited, Difficult • RESULTS – Outstanding (99.9%)
    19. 19. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Sherborn • Data – 6 fields for names – 2 classification levels (genus, order) – 2 elements for Code compliance – 3 fields for bibliographic data • Results – Musca names (1,807 names; 3 errors, 1 missing) • Thompson & Pont (1994) – Diptera genera (1,959 names Sherborn) • Missed names (43) • Missed misspelling / emendations (380; 147 Agassiz) • Missed names due to rules changes (17) • Systema Dipterorum (2,405 names; 27 names missed [11 Agassiz!)
    20. 20. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Sherborn – note1
    21. 21. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Sherborn – note2
    22. 22. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Nomenclators Builders & Consolidators
    23. 23. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera TODAY • Builders – AnimalBase (Pre 1790) – Zoological Record – Systema Dipterorum (And other group databases, WoRMS) – ZooBank ???? • Consolidators – IT IS – Species2000 – GBIF (???GNA) – uBio – Joel Hallan • Users – Encyclopedia of Life, ZipCode Zoo, et cetera
    24. 24. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Systema Dipterorum • Standards - High – International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (4th Edition) • Data: Discovery, Capture, Management = partially automated • Literature – Accessibility – Excellent (BioDiversity Heritage Library, etc) • RESULTS – Unknown, probably very good!
    25. 25. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Systema Dipterorum • Data – 16 fields for names – 16 classification levels (order, family, tribe, genus, plus supra, sub, infra) – About 12 elements of Code compliance – 9 fields of bibliographic data • Results We are much better than all our predecessor put together! Because we combine, review, and enhance their work along with adding much more and more new recent information!
    26. 26. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Systema Dipterorum Today • number of records: – 200,603 species names (162,514 valid) – 23,404 genera (12,067 valid) – 32,684 references • records compared to original literature: – 37,629 species (~18 %) – 6,589 genera (~28 %) as of 28 October 2011
    27. 27. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Systema Dipterorum
    28. 28. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
    29. 29. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera
    30. 30. The BioSystematic Database of World Diptera Thanks • Schlinger Foundation [2000-- ] • Species2000 [2010] • Once, but limited – USDA, ARS – GBIF – Smithsonian Institution • Diptera Research Community • Irina Brake, Neal Evenhuis, Adrian Pont

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