Specimen Labels

Kenelm Philip fnkwp at aurora.alaska.edu
Sun Sep 12 14:45:04 EDT 1999

	Despite the comments from the F&WS a couple of years ago, there is
no reason that each specimen have only one label. In fact, there are good
reasons for multiple labels on the same pin--and this is common museum
practice (even if F&WS enforcement people don't know it).

	Determinations can _change_. Locality/date/collector are permanent
data. Therefore determinations should be on a separate label. It should
contain genus, species, subspecies (if used), author, and the name of the
person who determined the specimen. I have never seen common names on
museum determination labels, but in your own collection you can do what
you prefer. Whether to use determination labels or not depends on your
collection. If you have many different species in the same drawer (or tray)
it can be very useful to have a determination label on each specimen.
In my own case, where I may have six drawers for the geographical distri-
bution of a single species, I put the determination label on the drawers
(or trays within a drawer).

	Every specimen should have a locality/date/collector label. Minimum
data are: Country/state/county/exact locality, collection date, name of
collector. Useful additional data are: elevation, lat/long coordinates,
habitat description. Notes on nectaring, copulating pairs, etc. are also
worth having. I place some of these data on the back of the locality
label, and use a second data label if needed. I also use a small additional
label to key the specimen to a station sheet, if there is one for that

							Ken Philip
fnkwp at uaf.edu

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