The new PNW herbarium portal


The Consortium of Pacific Northwest Herbaria data portal has recently undergone a major update with substantially increased data content. If herbarium specimen data is of interest to you, I encourage you to take a look.

The Consortium represents herbaria in the U.S. states of Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, and Washington, and the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and Yukon Territory.

Our new web site provides access to over 1.7 million specimen records and 150,000 high resolution images from 13 herbaria, making it the most comprehensive source of herbarium specimen data for the Pacific Northwest. Data are available for nearly all of the major herbaria in our region and a growing portion of the smaller herbaria, and cover vascular plants, bryophytes, algae, lichens, and fungi.

Our redesigned specimen search page contains many features besides basic text searches, including map-based searches, images of specimen sheets, and numerous options for filtering, displaying, and downloading data. The 150,000 images are viewable online at full resolution and serve as a new digital reference for the region. You can also create checklists for counties or any arbitrary geographic region.

Additional content is under development, including ways to accept user feedback such as annotations, more features built around the specimen images, and content for mobile devices. Additionally, data and image management software developed for the project will be made available.

The project is funded by a collaborative, $1.3 million grant from the National Science Foundation to image and database specimens from multiple herbaria across the Pacific Northwest. Grant partners are the University of Idaho (ID), University of Washington (WTU), Oregon State University (OSC), and Montana State University (MONTU). Work on the grant began in June, 2010.  By the end of the project, in 2013, our web site will contain about 2 million records and 350,000 images.