pforams@mikrotax - Introduction

This site has now grown into a major reference source for the taxonomy of planktonic foraminifera. These beautiful microfossils are a key tool in modern geological research widely used in biostratigraphy, palaeoceanography and study of evolutionary pattern and process. Consequently they are used by a diverse set of students, academic researchers and industrial geologists all of whom need data on their taxonomy, identification, and geological ranges. The site is not aimed at any particular set of users but to act as a central reference source accesible to anyone interested in the group.

The site has essentially been created by combining data from previous databases and syntheses - especially the Chronos database - and migrating it into a database system - mikrotax - initially created for the Nannotax website. The project to do this has been funded by a UK Natural Environment Research council grant to Profs. Bridget Wade and Paul Bown of University College London.

Paul Bown, Brian Huber, Bridget Wade, Jeremy Young

A few features of the site

Coverage to date and plans

paleogene pf images Cenozoic (630 taxa, 2700 images)
  • Extant Taxonomy primarily follows the results of SCOR Working Group 138 “Planktonic foraminifera and ocean changes” as published in Brummer & Kucera (2014, 2015, 2022). It also includes biogeographic maps fromthe ForCens databases (Siccha & Kucera 2017) and molecular genetic data from the PFR2 datbase (Morard et al. 2015).
  • Neogene The taxonomy follows Brummer & Kucera (2022) and Aze et al. (2011). Other content is mainly from Kennett & Srinivisan (1983) with modifications and corrections. anytaxa are covered by the more recent syntheses of extant and Oligocene taxa but many others have not been.
  • Oligocene - comprehensive and up to date coverage using content from the Atlas of Oligocene Planktonic Foraminifera (Wade et al. 2018) produced by the Paleogene Planktonic Foraminiferal Working Group.
  • Eocene - rather comprehensive and up to date coverage, using content from the Atlas of Eocene Planktonic Foraminifera (Pearson et al. 2006), as prepared between 1997 and 2006 by members of the Eocene Working Group
  • Paleocene - rather comprehensive and up to date coverage, using content from the Atlas of Paleocene Planktonic Foraminifera (Olsson et al. 1999), as prepared between 1987 and 1996 by members of the Paleocene Planktonic Foraminiferal Working Group
mesozoic pf images Mesozoic (600 taxa, 1500 images)
  • Extensive content derived from the Chronos online database developed by the Mesozoic Planktonic Foraminiferal Working Group. Work on this part of the database is under active development by the working group, lead by Brian Huber and Maria Rose Petrizzo. Please contact them if you would like to assist.
catalog pf images Catalog (2600 taxa, 6000 images)
  • This is a separate database of original descriptions and type-specimen illustrations. Much content has been transfered from the Chronos database (including many new images of type-specimens and translations of original descriptions) and additional content is being added.

Aze, T.; Ezard, T.H.G.; Purvis, A.; Coxall, H.K.; Stewart, D.R.M.; Wade, B.S. & Pearson, P.N.P., (2011). A phylogeny of Cenozoic macroperforate planktonic foraminifera from fossil data. Biological Reviews, 86: 900-927.

Brummer, G.J.A. & Kucera, M., (2014). SCOR/ICBP 138 taxonomy and key to species of modern planktonic foraminfera v2.1. Chart distributed at TMS FNG meeting Texel, The Netherlands, June 2014: 1.

Brummer, G.J.A. & Kucera, M., (2015). Taxonomy of extant planktonic foraminifera, SCOR/IGBP WG138; August 2015. In: Sprero, H. and Kucera, M. (Editors), SCOR/IGBP Working Group 138: Planktonic Foraminifera and Ocean Changes. Final Workshop & Short Course on Culturing Planktonic Foraminifera. California, pp. 8.

Brummer, G-J. A. & Kucera, M. (2022). Taxonomic review of living planktonic foraminifera. Journal of Micropalaeontology. 41: 29-74.

Kennett, J.P. & Srinivasan, M.S., (1983). Neogene Planktonic Foraminifera. Hutchinson Ross Publishing Co., Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, 1-265 pp.

Morard, R. et al. (2015). PFR2: a curated database of planktonic foraminifera 18S ribosomal DNA as a resource for studies of plankton ecology, biogeography and evolution. Molecular Ecology Resources. 15: 1472-1485.

Olsson, R.K.; Hemleben, C.; Berggren, W.A. & Huber, B.T., (1999). Atlas of Paleocene Planktonic Foraminifera. Smithsonian Contributions to Paleobiology, 85: 1-252 pp.

Pearson, P.N.; Olsson, R.K.; Huber, B.T.; Hemleben, C. & Berggren, W.A., (2006). Atlas of Eocene planktonic foraminifera. Cushman Foundation for Foraminiferal Research Special Publication, 41: 1-507.

Siccha, M. & Kucera, M. (2017). ForCenS, a curated database of planktonic foraminifera census counts in marine surface sediment samples. Scientific Data. 4(1): 1-12.

Wade, B.S.; Olsson, R.K.; Pearson, P.N.; Huber, B.T. & Berggren, W.A., (2018). Atlas of Oligocene Planktonic Foraminifera. Cushman Foundation Special Pulbication, 46, 524 pp.