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Loans and Exchange

Specimens are generally available on loan for scientific research in the public interest through activities and procedures that will not endanger the safety and integrity of the specimens as archival objects. The safety and security of the specimens is of prime importance.

Loans are made for non-destructive examination of external morphology, gross anatomy, field notes and other annotations, for taxonomic, biogeographic and historic research purposes. Loans for DNA or phytochemical sampling, or for anatomical, palynological, ecological, geographic, ethnobotanical or historical studies, or for display or educative purposes, will be considered if alternative materials are unavailable, and if the proposed use will not involve undue impact on specimens.

If any of the loan conditions cannot be met due to local policy or operational requirements, please contact the Curator to discuss the nature of the difficulty and explore possible alternative arrangements.

Loans are negotiated and made on behalf of botanical institutions and their directors, not by individual researchers. Loans will not be made to individuals and will only be made to destinations where safe and secure transport and storage arrangements exist.

Formal requests for loans or samples from voucher specimens should be made in writing or email to the Curator by the head of a recognised botanical institution on behalf of the researcher. The head of the borrowing institution will take responsibility for the security, documentation and safe return of all specimens, and for adherence to the conditions of the loan. Loans will not be dispatched until these conditions are agreed to.

Requests for loans or vouchered samples should include the following information:

i. the names of researchers on whose behalf the loan is made;

ii. the nomenclatural and taxonomic scope of the work;

iii. the geographic or regional scope of the work;

iv. the relationship of the work to other projects (e.g. national or regional floras or checklists);

v. an outline of any commercial arrangements bearing upon the use of the material.

The Australian Tropical Herbarium operates an exchange program. Duplicate specimens are distributed to Australian and overseas herbaria. The Australian Tropical Herbarium is interested to receive duplicate specimens from tropical Australia, Pacific and south east Asia. Please contact the Curator or Director PRIOR to sending specimens as Australia has strict quarantine regulations that apply to herbarium specimens. Failure to comply with these regulations could result in the seizure and destruction of specimens.

Inquiries about loans and exchange can be made to the Curator or the Director of the Australian Tropical Herbarium.