Herbarium Policies and Forms

VISITOR POLICY 

The UARK Herbarium welcomes researchers from universities, botanical institutions, federal and state agencies, non-profit organizations, and private businesses. Please read the following guidelines before making plans to visit. 

  • Please contact the Collections Manager before visiting to ensure someone will be available to assist you during your visit. 
  • Fill out the Collection Use Record at the beginning of each visit. 
  • If you plan to bring specimens with you, they must be decontaminated to reduce the possibility of introducing insect pests to the herbarium. Specimens must be placed in our freezer for a minimum of 72 hours before they can be brought into the main herbarium, so please make arrangements to mail the specimens to us ahead of your visit.
  • Before using the collection, you will be trained on the proper methods of handling herbarium specimens. 
  • No material may be removed from any specimen without prior, written permission. 
  • If you wish to take photographs/images of specimens for use in publications, presentations, or other media, acknowledgement will need to be given to UARK. 
  • Food is not allowed in the herbarium. Beverages are restricted to one area of the herbarium, and beverage containers must have a lid. 

LOAN POLICY 

The University of Arkansas Herbarium (UARK) lends specimens to recognized institutions. Researchers wishing to borrow material should send a letter of request to the Collections Manager and include the following information: 

  • Institution name 
  • Name and status of the researcher (student, faculty, or other researchers) 
  • The nature of the research 
  • Taxa requested, including synonyms 

Loans are made for a period of one year, with renewals available upon receipt of a written request made to the Collections Manager. UARK will retain a few sheets of each taxon for reference purposes. Loans are made only to institutions with adequate storage facilities for the specimens. 

Upon receipt of the material, the borrowing institution should acknowledge the loan in written form. A return form will be included in the loan shipment. Any discrepancies in count or comments on loan condition should be made at time of receipt. 

Destructive sampling will be considered on a case-by-case basis, and approval must be obtained from the Collections Manager prior to any sampling. 

UARK expects that specimens will be returned with proper annotations. Determination or affirmation labels should be glued above and near the original label whenever possible, and should include: 

  • Taxon name 
  • Investigator’s name 
  • Institution 
  • Date of annotation (mm/dd/yy) 

Specimens should be shipped back to UARK using the original packing materials and should be arranged as received: in alphabetical order by taxon, and within the taxon, alphabetical by county. It is expected that the borrowing institution will pay for the return shipment, and that great care will be taken in packing the specimens for transit. 

DESTRUCTIVE SAMPLING POLICY 

The purpose of the University of Arkansas Herbarium is to document the diversity and distribution of the flora of Arkansas. Because our primary concern is the preservation of specimens that accomplish this purpose, only in rare instances will destructive sampling of herbarium specimens be permitted. Every effort should first be made to find an alternative source for necessary plant material.  

The University of Arkansas Herbarium will consider each request for destructive sampling of specimens on a case-by-case basis, and reserves the right to refuse any request for any reason. Requests made by commercial entities will be denied. No material may be removed from any specimen without prior, written consent from the Collections Manager. 

Destructive sampling will not be permitted of type specimens, historical collections, or of taxa for which there are fewer than three (3) specimens at UARK.  

If a destructive sampling request is approved, the specimens being loaned will be subject to the University of Arkansas Herbarium Loan Policy, as well as the following conditions: 

  1. Plant samples obtained from UARK specimens are not transferrable. They are to be retained only by the requester or the requester’s institution. 
  2.  
  3. Only remove material from a specimen that contains sufficient material so that the morphological value of the specimen is retained after the sampling has been completed. When possible, use material from the fragment envelope first. If sufficient material is not contained on a specimen in question, do not remove a sample from it. 
  4.  
  5. An annotation label will be affixed to the specimen being sampled indicating the type of material that was removed, and will also include the investigator’s name(s), date (mm/dd/yy), and institution.
  6.  
  7. If a publication results from plant material originating at UARK, please acknowledge the University of Arkansas Herbarium as the source. 

A formal request, along with a completed, signed Destructive Sampling Request Form should be emailed to Jennifer Ogle at jogle@uark.edu or mailed to:  

Jennifer Ogle, Collections Manager 
University of Arkansas Herbarium 
Department of Biological Sciences 
Science and Engineering, Room 601 
University of Arkansas 
Fayetteville, AR 72701