The dataset (Key for Plant Species Codes in Konza Prairie Community Composition Datasets) contains a numeric code for each vascular plant species that has been recorded in any Konza Prairie LTER plant community composition dataset (e.g. PVC02, PBG01, WAT01, BGPVC2). Each code designates a vasular plant taxon (species level). Variables include: family, genus, specific epithet, lifespan, growth form, origin, photosynthetic pathway (for grasses).
This list was created in order to maintain consistency in the identities of vascular plant taxa through time and across various datasets. The names applied to any particular species often vary over time due to taxonomic revision. Various names may also be applied to a single species by different individuals or groups based on colloquial or idiomatic application of names that are more (or less) up-to-date. Each species is, therefore, given a numeric code that serves as an anchor for its identity. With the identities of its members intact, each dataset can maintain its integrity through time and may be further integrated with other datasets.
Originally, this dataset was populated with species that were thought to be the most likely to occur in plots on site. Later, the names of all species known to occur on KPBS were added. Currently, species are added to the list only after having been identified and located within experimental plots that utilize these codes in their associated datasets. New species are assigned the next available number. Names and attributes are applied based on an acceptable and current taxonomic treatment.
For additional metadata information see: http://lter.konza.ksu.edu/sites/default/files/DC.pdfFor additional methods information see: http://lter.konza.ksu.edu/sites/default/files/MM.pdf
New species are added annually as needed. Names for previously recorded species are updated on an approximately decadal basis.