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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

U.S. National Fungus Collections - Depositing Vouchers
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To ensure scientific reliability of published reports about fungi, properly prepared voucher specimens and cultures should be deposited in recognized institutions and cited in the publication. When new taxa are described, such specimens are required and a living culture should be deposited in a recognized culture collection as well. This point has been recently reiterated by Agerer et al. (2000) in an open letter from numerous mycologists to the mycological scientific community which appeared in several scientific journals. The resources for depositing voucher specimens are available to all scientists. Dried fungal specimens, either of pure cultures or on the substrate, can be deposited at any of the numerous fungal herbaria.

Living fungal cultures for which sequences have been entered in GenBank or any other sequence repository should be deposited at a recognized culture collection such as the American Type Culture Collection (ATCC) or the Centraalbureau voor Schimmelcultures (CBS). These institutions accept living cultures that are of interest to the scientific community, particularly a culture that has been the subject of a publication. These culture collections take great care to store their cultures in conditions that will allow as little alteration as possible during long-term storage. Depositing a culture is free. The deposition form to be completed is available at their respective Web sites.

All dried fungal specimens of interest to scientists, plant quarantine officials, extension agents, and others can be deposited at:

U.S. National Fungus Collections (BPI)
Systematic Mycology and Microbiology Laboratory
USDA-Agricultural Research Service
Room 229, Building 010A
10300 Baltimore Avenue
Beltsville, MD 20705-2350 USA
Phone: (301)504-6921
Fax: (301)504-5062
HerbariumBPI@ars.usda.gov

Use our Printable herbarium deposition form or clearly label specimens with the following information, if available:

  • Scientific name of fungus, including authority
  • Scientific name of host
  • Substrate/plant part
  • Collection location (country, state, county, town or city, and specific locality information)
  • Latitude/Longitude/Elevation
  • Habitat
  • Collector(s) and/or person who isolated the fungus
  • Collection date
  • Collector's number
  • Determiner
  • Type status (Type specimens are not added to the publicly-accessible specimen database until publication)
  • Accession numbers in other herbaria, culture collections, or GenBank
  • Publications that refer to the specimen (please also send us a reprint)

Please DO NOT send specimens with naphthalene (moth balls).

BPI numbers for use in publications will be provided upon receipt of specimens. Reprints of publications resulting from studies based on BPI specimens should be sent to the Herbarium Manager at the address above.


Last Modified: 6/17/2011
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