The BRIT Herbarium grows through the active exchange of plant material with other institutions, the acquisition of orphaned or donated herbaria, and donations of plant material by independent botanical collectors. Although BRIT is interested in receiving material from all continents, we have a particular interest in specimens collected in Texas, the southeastern United States, the Amazonian region, and the Malesian floristic region. Taxonomically, BRIT is interested in receiving vascular plants, especially Cyperaceae, Poaceae, Fabaceae, and Asteraceae; bryophytes; lichens; weeds; and cultivated plants.
The herbaria of BRIT/SMU/VDB actively promote scientific use of the collection through loans and exchanges with other institutions.
The BRIT Herbarium actively exchanges herbarium specimens with other institutions as a means of enhancing our holdings. Although the BRIT herbaria have strong and growing collections from Texas and the southeastern United States, specimens from any part of the world with proper identification and label data will be accepted.
In return, BRIT can exchange mounted and unmounted specimens, mostly from North America. If you are interested in starting an exchange program with the BRIT Herbarium, contact us at: firstname.lastname@example.org or (817) 332-4441.
Our collections are available to the scientific community and to the public for research use and as tools for education and cultural enhancement. BRIT’s loan policy is designed to allow the use of those specimens with the safety and long-term preservation of the collection in mind.
Specimens will be packed with great care for transit and are expected to be returned in the same manner.
Specimens on loan must be stored in such a manner as to keep them safe from insect attack, and handled with care at all times.
Loan requests will be accepted only from qualified institutions (with a listing in Index Herbariorum) possessing appropriate facilities for storage of specimens. Loans usually are not made to individuals. Use of materials by graduate students must be conducted under the supervision of a major professor. Loans should be requested by the Collections Manager, Curator, or equivalent person responsible for the care of specimens at the borrowing institution.
Loans of herbarium specimens are made for a period of one year, with extensions granted by the Collections Manager only upon written request. Normally a few sheets of each species are retained at BRIT for reference purposes.
All herbarium sheets should be returned with a properly-attached annotation label with the name of the investigator, institution, and date.
Please cite BRIT, SMU, and/or VDB in any publications resulting from studies of these collections. Reprints or copies of resultant publications should be sent to BRIT.
Removal of material from specimens must first be approved by the Collections Manager. In addition, the following rules for destructive sampling apply:
No material may be removed from types or from specimens of historical importance.
If suitable loose material is available in packets, it should be used prior to removing parts from the mounted specimens.
Pollen should not be taken from more than one flower per sheet, and should be removed without damage to the flower.
An annotation label must reflect the portion of plant material removed, date of removal, investigator, institution, and place of deposit of prepared slides. Duplicate permanent slides must be deposited with BRIT.
Any genetic sequence derived from specimens on loan from BRIT-SMU-VDB should be deposited at GenBank, and GenBank accession numbers should be forwarded to BRIT and noted on the specimen annotations.