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treegrow PRO 6:49am, 23 April 2012
The Biodiversity Heritage Library (BHL) is a consortium of natural history and botanical libraries that cooperate to digitize and make accessible the legacy literature of biodiversity. Many of the books and journals scanned by BHL feature spectacular drawings and paintings that would make great illustrations for EOL pages.

BHL staff are continuously uploading images to their Flickr account. With almost 30,000 images uploaded so far, they need help tagging them for EOL use. If you would like to participate, please have a look at the instructions below. For general information about tagging photos for EOL, please see EOL machine tags and Frequently Asked Questions about EOL machine tags.

If you would like to participate in the tagging of BHL images, we recommend the following workflow:

Step 1: Find a set to work on.

The BHL photostream is nicely organized into thematic collections and each scanned work gets its own Flickr set. The best strategy is probably to find an untagged set and work your way through it. To make it easier to find untagged sets, BHL maintains a collection of sets for volunteer taggers.

Step 2: Find the name used in the scanned work.

Many images will have a scientific name right on the image. You may have to look at the large version of the image to be able to read it. For example, this image has the name Sonerila hirsutula at the bottom of the scanned sheet.

If there is no name on the sheet, you need to go hunting for the name in the original work on the BHL web site. For example, this image does not have any text on the scanned sheet. However, in the image description, there is a link to the relevant page in the scanned book. When you follow this link, you see that the image is associated with a description of the species Anthracoceros coronatus.

Step 3: Tag the image

Add the machine tag in the form: taxonomy:binomial="Genus species"

Remember that you must put quotes around any tags that have spaces in them. If you can only find the name of the genus or family, you can tag the image with whatever name you find. If there are several organisms shown in the same image, you can add tags for all organisms, but please do not mix ranks, i.e., don't add family, genus, and binomial tags to an image if those tags apply to different organisms. For more information, see Frequently Asked Questions about EOL machine tags.

For extra credit (i.e., karma points), you can add a hunt for the current accepted name of organisms in BHL plates to your workflow. And if you have access to image editing software, you can disassemble BHL plates that show multiple species. For more information about these activities, see Updating Taxon Names for BHL Images and Disassembling BHL Plates.

Questions, comments? Please post them to the Need help tagging Biodiversity Heritage Library Images thread.
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