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Wikispecies

The free species directory that anyone can edit.

It covers Animalia, Plantae, Fungi, Bacteria, Archaea, Protista and all other forms of life.

So far we have 469,103 articles

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A collaboration between Wikispecies and ZooKeys has been announced. PhytoKeys also joined the collaboration in November 2010. Images of species from ZooKeys and PhytoKeys will be uploaded to Wikimedia Commons and used in Wikispecies.



Distinguished author

Adriana Hoffmann Jacoby
Born 1940. Standard IPNI form: A.E.Hoffm.

As a Chilean botanist and environmentalist, Adriana Hoffmann Jacoby has authored over a dozen books on the flora of Chile and has identified and classified more than 100 new species of cacti. She was Chile's Environment Minister in 2000 and 2001. She has advocated for the sustainable management and protection of Chilean forests, leading opposition to illegal logging in her role as coordinator of Defensores del Bosque Chileno (Defenders of the Chilean Forest) since 1992.

Hoffmann was recognized by the United Nations in 1997 as one of the 25 leading environmentalists of the decade for her efforts to protect Chile's forests. In 1999 she won the National Environmental Prize in the category of Environmental Education, awarded by Comisión Nacional del Medio Ambiente (CONAMA). For her research into Chilean flora and her work in environmental education, Hoffmann received the Luis Oyarzún Award from the Austral University of Chile in 2003. She received a Fellow Award from the Cactus and Succulent Society of America in 2009.

Hoffmann has also served on the judging panel for the United Nations Environment Programme's Sasakawa Prize.

See also: Distinguished authors of previous months.

Species of the month

Flying Pterosaur

Quetzalcoatlus northropi

Quetzalcoatlus northropi

Some facts about this pterosaur:

Wingspan: 10–11 meters.

Total length: 9–10 meters.

Weight: 200–250 kilograms.

Habitat: Some experts think these reptiles lived on open plains or wetlands, feeding much like large storks today. Others think they may have been feeding upon the carcasses of dinosaurs, like modern vultures. Older ideas that they fed on fish at sea like modern albatrosses are now discredited as structurally unworkable.

Age of existence: 70.6 to 65 million years ago.

Distribution: Fossils were discovered in North America (Texas).

Diet: Small vertebrates.

First described: By the geologist and paleontologist Douglas A. Lawson in 1975.


Can a giraffe-sized animal fly? Apparently it can! It's not a beast you're likely to spot today soaring over your head, yet flying reptiles of this size thrived for millions of years, until the mass extinction event of 65 million years ago wiped them out. Quetzalcoatlus northropi was one of the largest known flying animals of all time. It had an extremely long neck with slender, toothless jaws. The head was topped by a long bony crest. The fingers on the front edge of its wing carried sharp claws that were utilized to grip on prey. Having lacked the muscle power to take off by a rapid sprint, it probably launched into the air with a leap-frog maneuver, relying on all four limbs, or maybe it took off by dropping from the height of a cliff or tree. Its name is derived from the the Aztec feathered serpent god Quetzalcoatl.

See also: Species of previous months

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