October 17, 2011
Significant Park Collection Joins the Consortium of California Herbaria in Providing Online Access
Yosemite National Park announces the Herbarium of the Yosemite Museum has joined the Consortium of California Herbaria (CCH) to provide online access of Yosemite plant specimens to both the scientific community and the general public. It is the first National Park Service herbarium, and the 22nd California herbarium, whose data for vascular plant specimens is included in CCH. This is an online searchable database of herbarium specimen information, and can be found at http://ucjeps.berkeley.edu/consortium/about.html.
The CCH search engine allows instant comparisons with collections outside the park and instant mapping of geo-referenced specimens. This improved accessibility will increase the use of Yosemite Museum plant specimen collections, enhancing their scientific value as reference tools.
"Adding a National Park Service herbarium is also an important step for the CCH, since these provide a unique regional picture of the local flora that is not available from outside herbaria," said Brent Mishler, Director of the University and Jepson Herbaria at UC Berkeley.
Located in the Yosemite Museum in Yosemite Valley, the herbarium collection has significant regional holdings, with 8,000 specimens dating from the early part of the 20th century to the present. While most of the collections date from the 1920s - 1960s, it is an actively growing herbarium with over 3,000 vascular plant specimens added in the last ten years. The herbarium is a valuable component of the park's museum collections and is an essential tool for managing and protecting Yosemite's complex flora.
Access to the collections in the Yosemite Museum is granted to researchers by advance appointment only.