About A catalogue of tropical polyclad flatworms
The goal of this proposed project is to catalogue and create 350 species pages for polyclad flatworms found in the tropical regions. I have been working with polyclads for the last nine years and have extensive experience with the collection, preservation, and identification of polyclad flatworms. During my PhD, I was part of an NSF-funded survey on the polyclad fauna of the wider Caribbean (PI: MK Litvaitis, UNH). Together with Dr. Litvaitis, we collected and processed about 650 specimens. We were able to obtain high resolution digital photographs, geo-references, information about their habitat, distribution, and most importantly, fresh material to correctly identify the species. We also prepared whole mounts and histological sections to deposit in museums, and obtained molecular data to create a DNA reference collection. We are still describing and re-describing species from the Caribbean and developing a more accurate taxonomic key. I consider that we have enough material and information to develop EOL pages for several species of polyclad flatworms.