Jerry Cooper Curator

Joined: May 30, 2011 Last Active: Aug 18, 2018

Looking for fungi was an interest that got me out of a window-less physics lab as a grad student in the UK in the 80s and over the years it turned into an obsession and eventually a job. As a hobby I started looking at macro-fungi, but too many people did them already in the UK, and so I turned to more obscure and challenging groups - slime moulds, plant pathogens, aquatic fungi, micro-fungi. My jobs over the years, which drifted away from physics and towards biology via computing, allowed me to get access to the technical literature and major collections, including the International Mycological Institute near London (now CABI), and currently at Manaaki Whenua-Landcare Research in New Zealand where I am a fungal systematist/informatician. After emigrating to NZ I still do a bit of everything, but increasingly macro-fungi, because here they are so poorly known. All my records are associated with specimens (associated with collecting permits) that go to our national fungarium, PDD, and so you will find my data there (online through NZFUNGI2). I'm posting species examples on NW as I get time. As an informatician/analyst/programmer I've been involved in designing and developing many biological information systems. In the UK IndexFungorum, SpeciesFungorum, the British Basidiomycete checklist, and the BMS Foray records database. In New Zealand NZFUNGI, the New Zealand Organisms Register (NZ national digital checklist). Internationally I'm the NZ Node Manager for the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, and past member of the global team of the Catalogue of Life/Species2000. I was involved in developing early versions of data exchange standards for Taxon Names and Concepts (TCS) and Invasive Alien Species (IAS), both through the TDWG Biodiversity Information Standards Group. I'm one of the board members of NZBRN (NZ Biodiversity Recording Network) who run NaturewatchNZ, which is the New Zealand instance of iNaturalist.

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