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Meanings of the most common latin abbreviations used in taxa:

Abbreviation Meaning Explanation Example Comment-field in PANGAEA
aff. affinis having affinity with but is not identical with Nodosaria aff. aspera
cf. confer probably belongs to the identified species (refer to or compare with) Rhizosolenia cf. styliformis
forma forma something like variety Rhizosolenia antennata forma semispina
group varies species combined under one group which are difficult to distinguish (combines at least 2 taxa) Thalassiothrix group
s.ampl. sensu amplo ---
s.f. sensu forma in the form (taxonomy) sense
s.l. sensu lato in the broader sense, not to be defined as parameter

(There are few exceptions, where the species was defined exactly like this)

Cibicidoides wuellerstorfi s.l. s.l.
s.str./s.s. sensu stricto in the strict (narrow) sense, not to be defined as parameter

(There are few exceptions, where the species was defined exactly like this)

Cibicidoides wuellerstorfi s.s. s.str. or s.s.
sensu species identification following a particular author, author not to be defined as parameter Rhizosolenia styliformis sensu Sundström (1986) sensu Sundström (1986)
sp. species determination of one species which was identified only at generic level Thalassiosira sp.
sp. A or sp.1 authors personal identification of a species; not to be defined as parameter Thalassionema sp. A sp. A, sp. 1
spp. determination of several species, which were identified only at generic level (plural of sp.) Chaetoceros spp.
ssp. subspecies identification below species level Helianthemum nummularium ssp. grandiflorum
var. varietas variety of a species (e.g. in shape or color); no real status in nomenclature Thalassionema nitzschiodes var. parva
var. cf. varietas confer probably belongs to the identified variety Thalassionema nitzschiodes var. cf. parva

Submit your faunal and floral data sets

Taxonomic names are written out in full in PANGAEA. Data submissions with abbreviated genus names cannot be processed. In many cases it is not possible to reliably infer the genus from the abbreviation.

Species code

In some data collections or systems a species code is used. The species code can be a number or just an abbreviation of the name; in most cases it is proprietary and thus does not follow any standard. When ever a code is provided with a data set, its source, reference or basic definition must be explained in the data series comment. Any abbreviations could also be substituted by its full meaning.

Linking taxonomy

The data model of PANGAEA was designed for georeferenced primary data and is not a taxonomic database.

Data sets with species names are archived/published as provided by the author at the time of publication (including the related reference(s) if applicable). Similar to publications, no part of the data set, i.e. names of species, can be changed after the data set is set to published. It will always reflect the state of the art at the time when the data were made public available - equivalent to a printed publication. It is in the responsibility of the taxonomic databases to keep track on the changes of taxa names, the assignments to groups or the naming history of a name and its synonyms.

Taxonomic parameters are currently automatically matched with the ITIS and WoRMS taxonomic databases.

PANGAEA is harvested by biogeographic information systems and global portals (OBIS, MARBEF, GBIF), which integrate species occurrence records from many data providers.

Reference sites:


Sigovini, M., Keppel, E. and Tagliapietra, D. (2016), Open Nomenclature in the biodiversity era. Methods Ecol Evol, 7: 1217-1225.