SCAN Overview & Updates

In 2012, the Southwest Collections of Arthropods Network (SCAN) project brought together 10 small to large sized arthropod collections located in the megadiverse but taxonomically underexplored ecoregion of the southwestern United States and adjoining Mexico to create a virtual collection network. We immediately received scores of requests to house data from other collections and the full range of arthropod taxa. The Symbiota framework, the underlying software that runs the SCAN data portal was ideal for adding other collections.  Thus, we changed the name of SCAN to Symbiota Collections of Arthropods Network, and we are currently serving over 18 million records and 2 million images of arthropods.  Over 85% of the records are from North America, but since SCAN is primarily built on organizing datasets by collection, we serve data from all over the world from North American collections.  We try to limit records from data providers that exist outside of North America to specimens that were collected or imaged in North America. Although SCAN has expanded beyond Southwest ground-dwelling arthropods, we have successfully sponsored six Partnerships in established Networks (PEN) projects, and will continue to sponsor additional PEN grants through 2020.

Guidelines for Acceptable Use of Data

Recommended Citation Formats

Use one of the following formats to cite data retrieved from the SCAN network:

General Citation:
SCAN. 2018. http// Accessed on November 09.
Usage of occurrence data from specific institutions:

Biodiversity occurrence data published by: <List of Collections> (Accessed through SCAN Data Portal, http//, YYYY-MM-DD)

For example:
Biodiversity occurrence data published by: Field Museum of Natural History, Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, and New York Botanical Garden (Accessed through SCAN Data Portal, http//, 2018-11-09)

Occurrence Record Use Policy

  • While SCAN will make every effort possible to control and document the quality of the data it publishes, the data are made available “as is”. Any report of errors in the data should be directed to the appropriate curators and/or collections managers.
  • SCAN cannot assume responsibility for damages resulting from mis-use or mis-interpretation of datasets or from errors or omissions that may exist in the data.
  • It is considered a matter of professional ethics to acknowledge the work of other scientists that has resulted in data used in subsequent research.
  • SCAN expects that any use of data from this server will be accompanied with the appropriate citations and acknowledgments.
  • SCAN encourages users to contact the original investigator responsible for the data that they are accessing. Where appropriate, researchers whose projects are integrally dependent on particular group of specimen data are encouraged to consider collaboration and/or co-authorship with original investigators.
  • SCAN asks that users not redistribute data obtained from this site. However, links or references to this site may be freely posted.


Publications either featuring SCAN or Publication used data from SCAN Data Providers (Last Updated September 9, 2018)

Bisulca, C., Pool, M. and Odegaard, N., (2017). A survey of plant and insect exudates in the archaeology of Arizona. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 15, pp.272-281.

Boyle, J.H., Dalgleish, H.J. and Puzey, J., 2018. Monarch butterfly and milkweed declines substantially predate the use of genetically modified crops. bioRxiv, p.378299.

Brantley, S.L., Chapman, C.A., & N.S. Cobb. (2015). Comparative spider community changes along two elevation gradients in the southwestern U.S., chap. D in Proceedings of the 12th Biennial Conference of Research on the Colorado Plateau: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2016.

Chaini, S. (2015). A Gap Analysis of Biodiversity Research in Rocky Mountain National Park: A Pilot Study on Spiders. (Doctoral dissertation, Duke University).

Chamberlain, S.A. and Boettiger, C., (2017). R Python, and Ruby clients for GBIF species occurrence data. PeerJ PrePrints.

Cushing, P. E., Graham, M. R., Prendini, L., & Brookhart, J. O. (2015). A multilocus molecular phylogeny of the endemic North American camel spider family Eremobatidae (Arachnida: Solifugae). Molecular phylogenetics and evolution, 92, 280-293.

Dahlberg, E. (2015). A new earliest Paleocene (Puercan) fauna from the Denver Formation in Colorado’s Denver Basin. University of Colorado, Boulder, CO.

DiDomenico, A. and Hedin, M., (2016). New species in the Sitalcina sura species group (Opiliones, Laniatores, Phalangodidae), with evidence for a biogeographic link between California desert canyons and Arizona sky islands. ZooKeys, (586), p.1.

Donaldson, T.G., de León, A.A.P., Li, A.I., Castro-Arellano, I., Wozniak, E., Boyle, W.K., Hargrove, R., Wilder, H.K., Kim, H.J., Teel, P.D. and Lopez, J.E., (2016). Assessment of the geographic distribution of Ornithodoros turicata (Argasidae): climate variation and host diversity. PLoS neglected tropical diseases, 10(2), p.e0004383.

Franz, N.M., O’Brien, C.W., Shirota, S.D., Shillingburg, M.T. and Gilbert, E.E., (2014.) Assembling a virtual Weevils of North America checklist with Symbiota–preliminary insights. In 12th Biennial Conference of Science and Management on the Colorado Plateau (Vol. 5).

Franz, N.M., M. Shillingburg & S. Shirota (2013). Using SCAN to construct an arthropod checklist – preliminary insights from the Weevils of North America projects. U.S. , Chapter D in Proceedings of the 12th Biennial Conference of Research on the Colorado Plateau: U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Report 2016.

Guevara, Lázaro, and Víctor Sánchez-Cordero. “New records of a critically endangered shrew from Mexican cloud forests (Soricidae, Cryptotis nelsoni) and prospects for future field research.” Biodiversity Data Journal 6 (2018): e26667.

Heinrich, P.L., Gilbert, E., Cobb, N.S. and Franz, N., (2015) Symbiota collections of arthropods network (SCAN): A data portal built to visualize, manipulate, and export species occurrences.

Hesler, L.S. and Lundgren, J.G., (2017). First Record of Hippodamia variegata (Coleoptera: Coccinellidae) in Illinois, USA, and Relation to Its Other Midwestern Collection Records. The Great Lakes Entomologist, 50(1), p.9.

Hicks, A. (2015). In the shadow of a megalopolis, a new Flexamia from a threatened grass species in the New Jersey Pine Barrens (Hemiptera, Cicadellidae, Deltocephalinae, Paralimnini). ZooKeys:69-79.

Hinson, K.R. and Blinn, R.L., 2018. Records and Notes for Two Uncommon Species of Coleoptera, Trichodesma klagesi (Fall)(Ptinidae) and Oxylaemus americanus LeConte (Teredidae), from North Carolina, USA. The Coleopterists Bulletin72(2), pp.292-294.

Huston, D.C., Araujo, D., Gibson, J.R. and Hutchinson, J.T., 2014. Epicauta polingi (Coleóptera: Meloidae) Feeding on Mountain Laurel (Sophora secundiflora) and Guajillo (Acacia berlandieri) in West Texas. Southwestern entomologist, 39(4), pp.887-890.

Johnston, M.A., Aalbu, R.L. and Franz, N.M., 2018. An updated checklist of the Tenebrionidae sec. Bousquet et al. 2018 of the Algodones Dunes of California, with comments on checklist data practices. Biodiversity data journal, (6).

Johnston, M.A., Fleming, D., Franz, N.M. and Smith, A.D., 2015. Amphidorini LeConte (Coleoptera: Tenebrionidae) of Arizona: keys and species accounts. The Coleopterists Bulletin, 14(mo4), pp.27-54.

Jasso-Selles, D.E., De Martini, F., Freeman, K.D., Garcia, M.D., Merrell, T.L., Scheffrahn, R.H. and Gile, G.H., 2017. The parabasalid symbiont community of Heterotermes aureus: Molecular and morphological characterization of four new species and reestablishment of the genus Cononympha. European journal of protistology, 61, pp.48-63.

Lannoye, E. 2015. A new middle Paleocene mammalian fauna from the Fort Union Formation, Great Divide Basin, Wyoming. University of Colorado, Boulder, CO.

Lee, S., 2014. Preliminary list of the lepidopterous insects in the Arizona State University Hasbrouck Insect Collection. Journal of Asia-Pacific Biodiversity, 7(1), pp.e76-e94.

Meyer, W.M. III, J.A. Eble, K. Franklin, R.B. McManus, S.L. Brantley, J. Henkel, P.E. Marek, W.E. Hall, C.A. Olson, R. McInroy, E.M.Bernal Loaiza, R.C. Brusca, and W. Moore. 2015. Ground-dwelling arthropod communities of a sky island mountain range in southeastern Arizona, USA: obtaining a baseline for assessing the effects of climate change. PLOS One 10(9): e0135210. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0135210.

Piel, W.H., 2018. The global latitudinal diversity gradient pattern in spiders. Journal of Biogeography45(8), pp.1896-1904.Rodriguez, J., Pitts, J.P., von Dohlen, C.D. and Wilson, J.S., 2014. Müllerian mimicry as a result of codivergence between velvet ants and spider wasps. PloS one, 9(11), p.e112942.

Schiefer, T.L., 2018. First Record of the Introduced Ambrosia Beetle Ambrosiophilus nodulosus (Eggers) in Mississippi, with Notes on the Distribution of Ambrosiodmus minor (Stebbing)(Coleoptera: Curculionidae: Scolytinae). The Coleopterists Bulletin, 72(2), pp.384-385.

Sharkey, M.J. and Chapman, E.G., 2017. Phylogeny of the Agathidinae (Hymenoptera: Braconidae) with a Revised Tribal Classification and the Description of a New Genus. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington, 119, pp.823-842.

Starrett, J., Derkarabetian, S., Richart, C.H., Cabrero, A. and Hedin, M., 2016. A new monster from southwest Oregon forests: Cryptomaster behemoth sp. n.(Opiliones, Laniatores, Travunioidea). ZooKeys, (555), p.11.

Stucky, B. J. 2013. Morphology, bioacoustics, and ecology of Tibicen neomexicensis sp. n., a new species of cicada from the Sacramento Mountains in New Mexico, U.S.A. (Hemiptera, Cicadidae, Tibicen). ZooKeys:49-71.

Ward, M.A., Brantley, S.L. and Miller, K.B., 2017. Trachypachus inermis Motschulsky (Coleoptera: Trachypachidae), a New State Record for New Mexico, USA. The Coleopterists Bulletin, 71(2), pp.372-373.

Whitehead, D.R., Chamorro, M.L. and Anderson, R.S., 2018. An Illustrated Key to the Species of Curculio Linnaeus (Coleoptera: Curculionidae) of North America East of the Mississippi River. Proceedings of the Entomological Society of Washington, 120(3), pp.616-641.

Whitman-Zai, J., M. Francis, M. Geick & P.E. Cushing 2015. Revision and morphological phylogenetic analysis of the funnel web spider genus Agelenopsis (Araneae: Agelenidae). Journal of Arachnology.. 43 (1),  1.

Will, K., Madan, R. and Hsu, H.H., 2017. Additions to the knowledge of Nevada carabid beetles (Coleoptera: Carabidae) and a preliminary list of carabids from the Great Basin National Park. Biodiv.


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