Submitted to: Meeting Abstract
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: June 23, 2001
Publication Date: N/A
Identity, evolutionary relationships, geographic distributions and host associations of parasites define a fundamental base of knowledge required for elucidating all manner of theoretical and real world problems. There is nothing more basic than a comprehensive understanding of parasite biodiversity. Through survey and inventory we attempt to delineate parasite distribution, establish faunal history, examine patterns of interaction among hosts and parasites, and formulate predictive frameworks and baselines to address biotic and abiotic impacts to northern systems integrating Contemporary and Historical biodiversity. Systematics, biodiversity and biogeographic research are the keystones for placing parasites within a broader context linking host biology and the environment. Achievement of a broad-based and integrated view of parasite faunal diversity will require synoptic coordinated collections at the regional or ecosystem level, standardized systematics approaches emphasizing comparative morphology and molecular methods, standards for survey and monitoring, a focus on comparative epidemiological data and comparative historical and contemporary baselines.