Catalog of Fishes

The Reference database consists primarily of references containing original descriptions (of genera, subgenera, species, and subspecies), and those used to document status of taxa.

Search results now contain diacritic marks, as well as bold and italic type faces. The text you are searching, however, is plain and simple; i.e., any character with an accent or diacritic mark was replaced with an un-decorated, single-character, equivalent. Thus, u-umlaut (ü) was replaced with a "u" alone (search for Gunther, not Guenther).

Searches can be made with a single word, a phrase in double quotes, or by joining multiple search terms (either a word or quoted phrase) with one of the three boolean (logical) operators "and", "or", and "and not". An asterisk (*) can be used at the end of a partial word or phase as a "wildcard", and will match any combination of 1 or more characters. (Always enclose a search term with a wildcard in double quotes – even if the term consists of a single word.)

We believe three searches will be typical:

  1. key word searches of titles, e.g. for a family, genus, locality, etc. If you search on "cuba" you will obtain a listing of all references that mention Cuba in their title.
  2. searches for an individual reference number, although this is somewhat obviated by the fact that all reference numbers in the species and genera databases are now returned as hyperlinks to the appropriate reference entry.
  3. searches by authors' names.

Because all references have a unique reference number, and because this number is present in all relevant species and genera entries, you can retrieve relevant name records by reference number. If you wanted to see all species entries linked to reference "1234", for example, you would enter:

[ "ref. 1234" ]

to search the species database. IMPORTANT: be sure to include "ref-dot-space" in front of the reference number, and to enclose the phrase in quotes. If you issued a search using the reference number alone (e.g., "22"), you would retrieve all entries in the database containing the string "22" (including those where "22" appears in a page number, catalog number, date, etc.). If your search returns zero results, and your are sure you have typed the number correctly (better to cut and paste long numbers), try searching the other database.