Note that ‘substrate’ and ecosystem fields should be entered using conversational English, as above. It is not necessary to use constructions like ‘leaf, living’ or ‘woodland, mixed’.
Group recorders receiving records from beginners will suspect that some of the identifications are wrong. Do not include these records in data which is to be passed on, or do draw attention to the doubt by placing a question mark after the name (if the records are on sheets or forms). If using the BMSFRD format enter ‘D’ (doubtful) in the Doubtful Record field. This field is more likely to be used by the Database managers after querying data submitted. If you have an unsure identification attention may be drawn to it by inserting “cf.” between the generic name and specific epithet e.g. Coprinus cf. comatus.
MycoRec is a simple database package designed specifically for recording fungi, written by Jerry Cooper formerly of CABI Bioscience but now working for Landcare Research in New Zealand. It was produced non-commercially and is available free of charge to any mycologist interested in using it and submitting records to the BMSFRD.
The program can be used to submit data to, or to extract data from, the BMSFRD and it can produce a variety of reports. It requires Access 97 (or 2000) to operate but a free ‘run-time’ version is available for users who do not have this software. Note that it does not permit users to change BMSFRD data directly – all entries have to be submitted to the BMSFRD Database Co- ordinator or Database Manager in the required format and they will check and add all new or update entries. This is to ensure that the integrity of the BMSFRD is maintained.
MycoRec contains a check-list of current fungus names and synonyms; names of associated organisms, substrate and substrate qualifiers; ecosystem terms; an index of locations which can be constructed; lists and numbers of Watsonian vice-counties; an index and codes for herbaria, both personal and those in institutions; and an index of fungus identification literature can be constructed. MycoRec can be downloaded from the internet. Select MycoRec/MycoRec.htm from the BMS website (http://www.britmycolsoc.org.uk – see Appendix 10) and follow instructions for downloading and installing.
Alternatively, and possibly easier for the less experienced web user, it can be obtained on a CD from the Database Manager. To open the CD and install the program there is a simple sequence of operations to follow and you should request these written instructions on how to proceed. If at all possible, try to arrange for an experienced MycoRec or PC user to help with installation and to give a demonstration on how to use the program to submit data to the BMSFRD and to generate reports. A similar database system designed by Ernest Emmett (referred to as MycoTrak) is also used by some recorders. Further details are available from him at the postal address given in Appendix 6.
Recording using other programs
The relative merits of IBM-compatible (PCs) and Apple Macintosh computers have always provoked much debate. Formerly these systems were mutually antagonistic to the extent that data produced by one system could only be converted to be used on the other by an inconvenient and lengthy process. With current technology it is now much easier to exchange data between the two systems.