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Catalog of Latin American Characeae

The phycological herbarium of The New York Botanical Garden contains about 140,000 specimens. It was built primarily by Marshall Avery Howe, phycologist and Assistant Director of the New York Botanical Garden, whose years at the Garden spanned 1901 to 1936. Howe collected more than 35,000 specimens of algae in eastern North America, Panama, and the West Indies.

Howe was instrumental in obtaining the herbaria of Timothy Field Allen and Frank Shipley Collins, the most important private algal herbaria of the day. Allen was the leading American student of the Charophyceae during the late 1800s, and he built a collection of approximately 4000 specimens from North and South America, Asia, and Europe. This herbarium was used extensively in the preparation of the monumental two-volume work, A Revision of the Characeae, by Richard D. Wood and Kozo Imahori. In 1978, the Garden received Wood's charophyte herbarium (ca. 7000 specimens), and together the Allen and Wood collections make the Garden's charophyte herbarium one of the finest in the world. Another area of taxonomic emphasis are coralline algae of the Caribbean region, Howe’s particular area of research interest.

To search the Latin American Characeae Catalog by taxonomic name (family, genus, species, or subspecific epithet), author, collector, collector number, barcode id, or type status, use the Basic Search box below. To search one or more specific fields in the database, choose the Detailed Search.

 Basic Search


 Advanced Search
(most recent determination)
Scientific Name
(most recent determination)
Searches the genus, species, infraspecies, and author abbreviations of a name.
(most recent determination)
(most recent determination)
(most recent determination)
(all determinations)
Scientific Name
(all determinations)
Searches the genus, species, infraspecies, and author abbreviations of a name.
(all determinations)
(all determinations)
(all determinations)
Common Name
Determiner Searches initials and last name.
Collector Searches initials and last name.
Collection Number
Collection Date
(dd mm yyyy)
One or more may be used to search the collection date.
Continent Examples: Africa, Antarctica, Asia, Central America, Europe, North America, Oceania, South America, West Indies
Country Avoid abbreviations. Examples: Netherlands Antilles; Papua New Guinea; Philippines; United States of America
State/Province Avoid abbreviations. Examples: Mato Grosso do Sul; Nevada; Santa Catarina
Precise Location
Plant Description
Barcode Unique NY-assigned specimen barcode number
Type Status "Holotype," "Isotype," etc.
Records with Images Limits searches to only those records with images or other multimedia attachments.
Records Per Page

Search Tips

Searches in the Virtual Herbarium are by default word-based. The fastest searches are made by using whole words as the criteria. Wildcard characters can be used to find partial words, but search times will be significantly longer.

Use an asterisk (*) as a substitute for any number of characters in a word. (Example: "South*" in the Province/State field will return specimen records from "New South Wales," "South Carolina," etc.)

Use an exclamation mark before a word to specifically exclude that word from the search. (Example: "Chara" in the Genus field and "!altaica" in the Species field will return all records of Chara except Chara altaica.)

Use quotation marks to search for exact phrases. Words not enclosed by quotation marks will be used to return records with all of the words, but not necessarily in the order typed.

*The Scientific Name field searches the genus, species, infraspecies, and author abbreviations of a name.
Example 1: the search term "pacifica" finds specimens of Chaetomorphopsis pacifica,, Coeloseira pacifica, Griffithsia pacifica, Polysiphonia pacifica var. determinata, Polysiphonia pacifica var. distans and Turnerella pacifica.
Example 2: the term "Kylin" finds specimen records of numerous taxa described by Johan H. Kylin.

Author abbreviations can be found using Harvard University Herbaria's Index of Botanists.

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