Thomas M. Pullen Herbarium
Wednesday, July 23, 2014 University of Mississippi | Biology Department
Collection Policy
Collection Policy
Loan Policy
Destructive Sampling Policy
Available Duplicates
Mission
The mission of the Pullen Herbarium is to document the flora of Mississippi and the southeastern United States through both space and time, to serve as a repository for voucher specimens from plant research conducted at the University of Mississippi, to serve as a reference for the identification of plant diversity, to facilitate and encourage both research and education in plant systematics and ecology, to provide access to the collection and its data by all research scientists, and to conserve and maintain the specimens therein for the future.


Access to the Pullen Herbarium
It is understood that an herbarium collection should be available to qualified researchers, both within the University and without. No fees are charged for access to the collection or for loans. In the case of extremely large loan requests, the Curator may attempt to develop a compromise or possibly deny the loan. Access to data on herbarium specimens is also available to qualified researchers. Specific locality information on threatened, endangered or otherwise sensitive plant species may be withheld, depending upon the judgement of the Director and Curator, in consultation with the relevant conservation authority, such as the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service or the Mississippi Natural Heritage Program. Specimens of popular drug plants are to be stored in a locked herbarium case and are the responsibility of the Curator.


Acquisition of Specimens
In order to be acceptable for acquisition, specimens must meet the following criteria:
1. the nature and quality of the specimen must be consistent with the herbarium mission.
2. the specimen must be well-prepared, have enough material to properly fill a sheet or packet, and must be adequately labeled with complete collection data on a 100% rag label.
3. the specimen should have fertile structures and/or other features that are diagnostic at other seasons of the year or the life of the plant.
4. the specimen is a research voucher.
5. specimens not meeting these requirements may be acquired, but added to the teaching collection rather than accessioned into the Pullen Herbarium.
Exceptions to the policies governing specimen acquisition may be made by the Director and Curator in cases where a specimen is of unusual historic, conservation, educational or other scientific value.


A Note About Voucher Specimens
Researchers depositing voucher specimens should reference the Pullen Herbarium in publications, and should deposit a reprint, if possible, in the herbarium library. Individuals or groups that routinely deposit large numbers of voucher specimens in the Pullen Herbarium will be asked to provide funds for curatorial supplies and mounting.


Accessioning and Records
It is the responsibility of the Curator to oversee the assessment, processing and recording of newly acquired specimens.
1. specimen acquisition will be recorded in a logbook maintained by the Curator.
2. acquired specimens and their labels will be mounted on 100% rag herbarium paper using an archival quality fixative.
3. a unique, sequential accession number will be assigned to each accessioned specimen and recorded in the accession book.
4. priority will be given to research voucher specimens, specimens required for research, or the most recently acquired specimens.


Deaccessioning
Occasionally, a specimen may be deaccessioned from the Pullen Herbarium. Deaccessioning is the responsibility of the Curator, after consultation with the Director. Specimens to be deaccessioned include:
1. mounted duplicates.
2. specimens so severely damaged that they are of negligible historic or scientific value.


Recordkeeping and Deaccessioning
Specimens will be officially deaccessioned by recording their removal in the accession record logbook and printing the word “canceled” over the accession number on the specimen. Deaccessioned specimens will be assessed of their value by the Curator. Those with value may be used for exchange with other institutions or added to the teaching collection. Those of no value will be destroyed.


Maintenance and Conservation of Collections
It is the responsibility of the Curator to oversee the long-term care of the collection. This includes, but is not limited to:
1. pest control - prevention and treatment.
2. adequate and appropriate storage space.
3. fire prevention.
4. specimens removed from the collection.
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