Taxonomic studies of plants, animals = useful in agriculture, forestry, industry and bio-resources and their diversity

  • Used for classification and identification of organisms

Identification of organisms = require intensive laboratory and field studies

Specimen of plant and animal = prime source of taxonomic studies


Herbarium = store house of collected plant specimens (dried, pressed and preserved on sheets)

Sheets is arranged according to a universally accepted system of classification

Herbarium sheets = has label providing information about date and place of collection, English, local and botanical names, family, collector’s name, etc

Botanical Gardens

Botanical Gardens = specialized gardens (collection of living plants for reference)

Plant species grown for identification purposes and each plant is labeled indicating its botanical/scientific name and its family

Famous botanical gardens = Kew (England), Indian Botanical Garden, Howrah (India) and National Botanical Research Institute, Lucknow (India)


Biological museums – generally set up in educational institutes (schools and colleges)

Museum = collections of preserved plant and animal specimens for study and reference

Specimen = preserved in the containers or jars in preservative solutions

Plant and animal specimens = can also be preserved as dry specimens

Insect = preserved in insect boxes after collecting, killing and pinning

Larger animals like birds and mammals = stuffed and preserved

Museum = have collections of skeletons of animals

Zoological Parks

Zoological parks = places where wild animals are kept in protected environments under human care (helps us to learn about their food habits and behavior)

Animals in a zoo = have conditions similar to their natural habitats

Children love visiting these parks = called Zoos


Key = taxonomical aid used for identification of plants and animals (based on similarities and dissimilarities)

Keys are based on contrasting characters generally in a pair called couplet

The choice made between two opposite options. This results in acceptance of only one and rejection of the other

Each statement in the key is called a lead

Separate taxonomic keys = required for each taxonomic category such as family, genus and species for identification purposes.

Keys are generally analytical in nature

Flora, Manuals, Monographs and Catalogues

These are used to record descriptions

These are helpful in correct identification

Flora = contains actual account of habitat and distribution of plants of a given area.

Flora provide the index to the plant species found in a particular area

Manuals = useful in providing information for identification of names of species found in an area

Monograph = contain information on any one taxon

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