Welcome to CoTRAM
The Cooperative Taxonomic Resource for American Myrtaceae was created for researchers of American Myrtaceae and others who might want to identify unknowns. The Myrtaceae, a family with perhaps over 5000 species may be the ninth largest family of flowering plants, but its taxonomy is yet poorly understood, so these can only be tentative estimates. It has two great centers of diversity: Australia, southern Asia and islands of that general region; and the American tropics. Perhaps half of all Myrtaceae occur in the Americas. The Atlantic Coastal Forest of Brazil is especially rich, the family sometimes being dominant there. Myrtaceae are also important in temperate Chile and Argentina, the Andes from Bolivia to Venezuela, the Guayana Highlands, Mesoamerica and the Caribbean.
Identification of American Myrtaceae can sometimes be a daunting task as some of the taxonomically important characters are cryptic (embryo structure) and because there is relatively little variation in vegetative characters. For example, it is often impossible for even a specialist to recognize an unknown sterile specimen to genus.
The objective of this website is to bring together databases of authority-identified specimens and images with software tools that allow one to make geographically restricted checklists and maps. An interactive key is being populated with character information. Generic and species descriptions will be added in time. Instructions on using this website will be posted in the near future.
Join CoTRAM as a regular visitor and please send your feedback to Leslie Landrum