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  • Taxonomic Data Review
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Look for these issues in taxonomic data

1) For invertebrates and diatoms, confirm that minimum target counts were achieved (e.g. 300 for invertebrates or 600 for diatoms). Tools in BioData help identify minimum target counts. If targets were not met, confirm that lab notes describe condition of the sample. For example, the entire invertebrate sample might have been sorted without reaching 300 organisms, or the 8 hour time limit specified in OFR 00-212 might have been reached. In another example, diatoms on slide might have been obscured by fine silts and clays. This information can be used by USGS biologist to confirm that sampling is successful, and if not, how to correct for future field collections.

2) For invertebrates, confirm that organisms were identified to target levels (e.g. OFR 00-212). Tools in BioData help identify minimum target counts. If targets were not met, confirm that lab notes document the shortfall. For example, a significant number of immature organisms will prevent identification to target level. This information can be used to consider shifting the sampling period to obtain mature individuals in future field collections.

3) Determine if there are obvious differences between current and previous taxonomic data from the site. For example, changes in the taxonomic level to which organisms are identified, appearance of new taxa, absence of formerly common taxa, or significant changes in relative abundance of taxonomic groups should alert the analyst to look further at the data, ask the lab about analyses, or contact one of the BioData taxonomic stewards for assistance.

4) Consider comparing quantitative (e.g. IRTH) and qualitative (e.g. IQMH) results, if applicable.  Note obvious differences and determine if there are differences in collection procedures or personnel. This information can be used by USGS biologist to flag data, ask questions, alter procedures, or contact one of the BioData taxonomic stewards for assistance.

Process for checking taxonomic data

1) Select the sample that you want to review

2) Set the review code for the taxonomic records


STEP 1: Select the sample that you want to review

  1. Apply filters to the display to show the samples that you want to select from.
    1. Only one community will be displayed at a time
  2. Consult the Taxonomic Data Review Icons page to understand what the icons mean
  3. Click on the Display link to open that set of records


STEP 2: Set their review code for the taxonomic records

  • You can use the column sort and resizing features to examine your data and look for outliers
  • The left hand summary panel can be hidden
  • You need to set the review code for every record
  • Beware- if your data set is large it may be spread across several pages (note "Page Size" and "Page x of y" below)
    • the 'select all' check box may not select all the records
    • you might want to consider using the "Set ALL Results to:" option at the bottom of the page.
  • Return to the sample/lab order list and make sure the Taxonomic Data Review Icon is filled in appropriately
    • If it's not, you missed some records or made some errors.

Review Status definitions

    • Awaiting Review: Default state given every result record when it is created.
    • Reviewed and Accepted: Reviewer has reviewed and accepted the result.
    • Reviewed and Rejected: Reviewer has rejected the record. One rejection in a result set means that none of the results in the result set will be published to BioData Retrieval.
    • Presumed Satisfactory: Result is neither accepted or rejected, but will not inhibit the transfer of the result set to BioData Retrieval.

Fish Condition Factor - sort to identify typos
The Fish Condition Factor is provided to identify typos only, and is not intended for weight-length relationship analysis. Sort by the Fish Condition Factor to identify typos in fish total length and weight data entry. Pay special attention to the highest values (especially those over 10) and lowest values (those less than 0.6).

BioData uses the following calculation for condition factor:

Source: Williams, J.E., 2000, Chapter 13, The Coefficient of Condition of Fish, in Schneider, James C., ed., Manual of fisheries survey methods II: with periodic updates: Michigan Department of Natural Resources, Fisheries Special Report 25, Ann Arbor.


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