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Taxonomic database

Spider taxonomists catch data on web

A successful systematics initiative in arachnology could provide an invaluable model for rapid delivery of taxonomic data for other animal groups. Until now, the inaccessibility of the classical and obscure taxonomic literature has been a major hindrance to the field's progress.

Credit: Illustration by Phil Disley

The World Spider Catalog (www.wsc.nmbe.ch), launched last year, now contains complete taxonomic data for almost 46,000 validated spider species and an embedded collection of 13,000 references. Spiders are the most species-rich terrestrial invertebrate group after insects.

More than 97% of the world's spider literature was collected within just 600 days of communicating our goal to the research community. The database logs a daily average of 600 hits and 400 downloads.

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Correspondence to Wolfgang Nentwig.

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Nentwig, W., Gloor, D. & Kropf, C. Spider taxonomists catch data on web. Nature 528, 479 (2015). https://doi.org/10.1038/528479a

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Further reading

  • Towards establishment of a centralized spider traits database

    • Elizabeth C. Lowe
    • , Jonas O. Wolff
    • , Alfonso Aceves-Aparicio
    • , Klaus Birkhofer
    • , Vasco Veiga Branco
    • , Pedro Cardoso
    • , Filipe Chichorro
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    • , Thiago Gonçalves-Souza
    • , Charles R. Haddad
    • , Marco Isaia
    • , Henrik Krehenwinkel
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    • , Nuria Macías-Hernández
    • , Jagoba Malumbres-Olarte
    • , Stefano Mammola
    • , Donald James McLean
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    • , Wolfgang Nentwig
    • , Stano Pekár
    • , Julien Pétillon
    • , Kaïna Privet
    • , Catherine Scott
    • , Gabriele Uhl
    • , Fernando Urbano-Tenorio
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    •  & Marie E. Herberstein

    The Journal of Arachnology (2020)

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    • , Theo Blick
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    • , Christo Deltshev
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    • , Carles Ribera
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  • Luring prey to the web: the case of Argiope and Nephila

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