Tips for Searching SID

The dataset retrieved is determined by the options selected on the initial search screen. It is possible to search at several taxonomic levels: APG recognised clade, APG recognised order, APG recognised family, Brummitt recognised family (=default family naming system), Brummitt recognised genus, and species. For further explanation and care points concerning these categories click here. It is worth remembering that not every order is included in a clade, nor is every family included in one of the monophyletic orders. If in doubt, search at the lowest taxonomic level of which you are certain. It is possible to use the wildcard character '*' to retrieve all records containing any text string of three or more characters that is entered. For example, entering 'Poly*' within the genus field will retrieve data for all taxa in genera beginning 'Poly-', whilst entering '*ium' in the species field will return records of all taxa with specific names ending in '-ium'.

To select the dataset to be searched, check the relevant boxes towards the bottom of the search screen. The default option (all boxes unchecked) will retrieve a list of all taxa specifying the taxonomic parameters entered for which any data are available. To only retrieve taxa for which e.g. storage behaviour information are available check the 'storage behaviour data' box. To retrieve a list of taxa for which both seed storage and seed weight data are available, check both boxes, and to select taxa for which all data types are available check all six boxes. In addition, the search can be limited to a particular storage behaviour category using the pull-down menu within the 'storage behaviour' box. Using this it is possible to search at several levels, for example all storage categories ('All'=default), all sub-categories of a particular category (e.g. 'Any recalcitrant'), or just one of the sub-categories (e.g. 'Intermediate ?'). For an explanation of the various storage behaviour categories and more information concerning the storage behaviour dataset click here. Boolean searching is not possible at present.

The initial output of the search is displayed on the summary results screen. This displays a list of the binomials (less frequently genus only) of all taxa satisfying the search parameters entered, along with a summary of their seed characteristics. Authorities for species' names are frequently omitted from published work, even now; and this can make the tracking of name changes or synonymy difficult or impossible. We are in the process of tackling synonymy for taxa that have been quoted with naming authorities in the source publication. Work is at an early stage, and the issue will be addressed over time as Kew and other botanical organisations get to grips with the taxonomy of different families, particularly through the World Checklist and Bibliography Series. Where no naming authority has been provided, we have not attempted to impose any taxonomy. Subsequently the user will notice that the same taxon name may appear in the results list more than once, with and without a species authority. Whilst not ideal, this is unavoidable at present. Please inform us of any obvious errors (see 'Feedback' below).

Clicking on a binomial within the summary results list will open a specific results screen detailing all of the information that is presently within SID for that taxon. This includes full higher taxonomic naming, descriptions of all seed biological data, and full details of references cited. At present data coverage is uneven, and not all taxa represented in the database have all information types entered. Data input is ongoing and coverage will become more uniform and complete with time. Information concerning germination, dispersal, seed weight, and oil and protein contents is presented in the abbreviated forms outlined below. It should be noted that not all fields are compulsory and that some may be empty.