Commons:Taxobox

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This guide explains how to build a taxobox, a table setting out the taxonomy of a group of living things.

Overview[edit]

  1. Select the appropriate structure for the taxobox (from #Basic taxoboxes if appropriate; otherwise assemble your own by following #Detailed structure) . Copy and paste the appropriate templates into the article.
  2. Choose the header color according to the kingdom; see #Color.
  3. Determine its conservation status, if possible; see #Status.
  4. Fill in the templates, deleting those that you don't use.

Basic taxoboxes[edit]

Taxobox for a plant species[edit]

{{Taxobox begin | color = lightgreen| name = }} <br>{{Status****}}
{{Taxobox image | image =[[Image:FILENAME.JPG|240px|NAME]] | caption = }}
{{Taxobox begin placement | color = lightgreen}}
{{Taxobox regnum entry | taxon = [[Plant]]ae}}
{{Taxobox divisio entry | taxon = [[ophyta]]}}
{{Taxobox classis entry | taxon = [[opsida]]}}
{{Taxobox ordo entry | taxon = [[ales]]}}
{{Taxobox familia entry | taxon = [[aceae]]}}
{{Taxobox genus entry | taxon = ''[[G]]''}}
{{Taxobox species entry | taxon = ''G. s''}}
{{Taxobox end placement}}
{{Taxobox section binomial botany | color = lightgreen| binomial_name = | author = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

Taxobox for an animal species[edit]

{{Taxobox begin | color = | name = }}
{{Taxobox image | image =[[Image:FILENAME.JPG|200px|NAME]] | caption = }}
{{Taxobox begin placement | color = }}
{{Taxobox regnum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox phylum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox classis entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox ordo entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox familia entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox genus entry | taxon = ''G''}}
{{Taxobox species entry | taxon = '''''G. s'''''}}
{{Taxobox end placement}}
{{Taxobox section binomial | color = | binomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

See #Color for choosing a color.

See #Footer for alternative footer (trinomials etc)

The name parameter to {{Taxobox begin}} should be the common name (if any) and should usually match the article title.

Taxobox for a higher plant group[edit]

{{Taxobox begin | color = lightgreen| name = }}
{{Taxobox image | image = | caption = }}
{{Taxobox begin placement | color = lightgreen}}
{{Taxobox regnum entry | taxon = [[Plant]]ae}}
{{Taxobox divisio entry | taxon = [[ophyta]]}}
{{Taxobox classis entry | taxon = [[opsida]]}}
{{Taxobox ordo entry | taxon = [[ales]]}}
{{Taxobox familia entry | taxon = [[aceae]]}}
{{Taxobox genus entry | taxon = ''G''}}
{{Taxobox end placement}}
{{Taxobox section subdivision | color = lightgreen| plural_taxon = }}
  subgroup 1<br/>
  subgroup 2<br/>
  ...
{{Taxobox end}}

Taxobox for a higher animal group[edit]

{{Taxobox begin | color = | name = }}
{{Taxobox image | image = | caption = }}
{{Taxobox begin placement | color = }}
{{Taxobox regnum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox phylum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox classis entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox ordo entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox familia entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox genus entry | taxon = '''''G'''''}}
{{Taxobox end placement}}
{{Taxobox section subdivision | color = | plural_taxon = }}
  subgroup 1<br/>
  subgroup 2<br/>
  ...
{{Taxobox end}}

The taxon described by the article should be in bold. See #Bold/italic markup below.

The plural_taxon parameter to {{Taxobox section subdivision}} should describe what rank the subdivisions are at, for instance Phyla, Classes, Orders. On occasions where ranks have not yet stabilized, it may be better to say Subgroups or Taxa. The list of subgroups should be separated with <br/> tags.

In cases where there are the list is so long the taxobox would be longer than the article, or where the classification is complex, unclear, or disputed, so that a brief summary is impossible, the list may be replaced with a comment like (see text) or the subdivision box may be omitted entirely. When there are more than about 20 entries, they should go in the article; when there are over a hundred or so, they should be given a separate article.

Sometimes it is convenient to represent more than one level of classification in the list. In that case the lower level groups are moved over to the right by prefixing them with &nbsp; characters — usually three for the first level of indentation, and then one to three more for each subsequent level. Major grades may also be represented by bolded headers: see plant or heterokont. Remember, though, these should mainly be done when the intermediate rank subgroups are not worthy of separate articles. Taxoboxes are too cramped to include too much duplicate information.

Extinct subgroups should be indicated with a dagger † (&#x2020;) or the word (extinct).

Bold/italic markup[edit]

In {{Taxobox section *}} and {{Taxobox begin ...}}, emphasis is handled automatically. In the individual taxon entries, however, the author must make this decision. Here are the guidelines.

  • The genus, species, and subspecies should be italicized whenever used, as is the biological standard. See for instance Pan. Higher taxa like families should never be italicized.
  • The final taxon is bold, due to it being the subject of the article, and any higher taxa that only include the final taxon are bolded as well. See for instance hominid, green sulfur bacteria, or Ginkgo. Note that the genus is currently bolded on many species articles, although it is not monotypic; this is based on a previous standard.
  • In a species' article, the binomial or trinomial name is italicized but should not be bold unless it is the title of the article:
Critter (Creepius crawlius) is a beastie that lives in habitat.
Snagotoothius unkillabilus is a horrible foot-puncturing weed that nobody ever bothered to name.

Complete classification[edit]

This taxobox contains a complete list of taxobox templates. Do not use this complete list: instead cut out all ranks except for the seven major ranks (regnum, phylum, classis, ordo, familia, genus, species) and the particular other ranks that are important to the taxon being described. The fine details of classification between (say) regnum and phylum are obscure, not directly relevant to an article on a species, and moreover are subject to dispute and change as conventions evolve and more discoveries are made.

{{Taxobox begin | color = | name = }}
{{Taxobox image | image = | caption = }}
{{Taxobox begin placement | color = }}
<!-- Do not use this complete list of entries! -->
{{Taxobox domain entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox regnum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox subregnum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox superdivisio entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox divisio entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox phylum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox subphylum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox infraphylum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox microphylum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox nanophylum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox superclassis entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox classis entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox subclassis entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox infraclassis entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox superordo entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox ordo entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox subordo entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox infraordo entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox superfamilia entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox familia entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox subfamilia entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox tribus entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox subtribus entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox genus entry | taxon = '''''G'''''}}
{{Taxobox subgenus entry | taxon =}}
{{Taxobox species entry | taxon = '''''S'''''}}
{{Taxobox subspecies entry | taxon = '''''s'''''}}
{{Taxobox end placement}}
<!-- Choose at most one of these: -->
{{Taxobox section binomial | color = | binomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox section binomial parens | color = | binomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox section binomial simple | color = | binomial_name = }}
{{Taxobox section binomial botany | color = | binomial_name = | author = }}
{{Taxobox section trinomial | color = | trinomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox section trinomial parens | color = | trinomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox section trinomial simple | color = | trinomial_name = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

For unranked groups use {{Taxobox unranked entry | taxon = }}

Color[edit]

Choose a color according to the kingdom. Make sure to spell "lightgrey" with an E and both "darkgray" and "gray" with an A, since some browsers will not accept alternate spellings. This color goes in every taxobox template color parameter.

Kingdoms

Animalia pink
Plantae lightgreen
Fungi lightblue
Protista khaki
Bacteria lightgrey
Archaea darkgray

Conservation status[edit]

Just after the opening, the conservation status may be included. It should be added to the end of that line, like this:

{{Taxobox begin | color = | name = }}<br />{{StatusEndangered}}
{{Taxobox image | image = | caption = }}
...

Choose one of the following templates:

Visible status Template
Template:StatusSecure {{StatusSecure}}
Template:StatusConcern {{StatusConcern}}
   Template:StatusLeastConcern {{StatusLeastConcern}}
   Template:StatusNearConcern {{StatusNearConcern}}
   Template:StatusConserveConcern {{StatusConserveConcern}}
Template:StatusVulnerable {{StatusVulnerable}}
Template:StatusEndangered {{StatusEndangered}}
Template:StatusCritical {{StatusCritical}}
Template:StatusExtinctW {{StatusExtinctW}}
Template:StatusExtinct {{StatusExtinct|when=[[date]]}}
Template:StatusFossil {{StatusFossil}}
Template:StatusPrehistoric {{StatusPrehistoric}}
Template:StatusData {{StatusData}}
Template:StatusUnknown {{StatusUnknown}}
Template:StatusSeeText {{StatusSeeText}}

You can search the IUCN's database of threatened species for the conservation status of many organisms.

Authority[edit]

The authority section documents the earliest description of a species or more narrowly classified group (e.g., subspecies). It contains the author (or authors) and the year of description.

Different authority templates are chosen based on:

  • Whether the author is known
  • Whether the author's original classification stands, or has been modified (for example, a species has been moved to another genus)
  • Whether the organism is a plant

The templates for the authority are:

Template When to use
Template:Taxobox section binomial Author is known. The original classification stands.
Template:Taxobox section binomial parens Author and date are known. The organism has been reclassified.
Template:Taxobox section binomial simple Author is unknown.
Template:Taxobox section binomial botany The organism is a plant, and the author is known. (Botanical references omit the date, and only the first letter of the author's last name is used.)
Template:Taxobox section trinomial A subspecies; author is known.
Template:Taxobox section trinomial parens A subspecies; author is known, and the organism has been reclassified.
Template:Taxobox section trinomial simple A subspecies; author is unknown.

Detailed structure[edit]

The taxobox consists of three main sections: a header, a placement section, and a footer. The header gives the name of the group and sometimes its conservation status and an image, and the placement section gives its phylogenetic position. There are different footers for different purposes.

Header[edit]

The general form of the header looks like this (with an optional conservation status; see #Status above):

{{Taxobox begin | color = | name = }}
{{Taxobox image | image = | caption = }}

The name is the common name where possible, and a generally accepted scientific name where not. In general it will be the same as the name of the corresponding article. The conservation and image templates are optional.

The image should be around 200px–250px in width, and not excessively tall. Do not use thumbnail or framed style, but do give alternative text, which should be the same as the caption.

Placement[edit]

The general form of the placement section is:

{{Taxobox begin placement | color = }}
{{Taxobox regnum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox phylum entry | taxon = }}
{{Taxobox classis entry | taxon = }}
...
{{Taxobox end placement}}

Each entry tag corresponds to a containing group, except for the last, which should be the group under consideration. Guidelines for linking and bolding taxa are as written above. Note the entry tags use the Latin name of the rank, in order to make porting between different languages easier. The major ranks are:

  • Kingdom: use {{Taxobox regnum entry | taxon = }}
  • Phylum or division: use {{Taxobox phylum entry | taxon = }} or {{Taxobox divisio entry | taxon = }}
  • Class: use {{Taxobox classis entry | taxon = }}
  • Order: use {{Taxobox ordo entry | taxon = }}
  • Family: use {{Taxobox familia entry | taxon = }}
  • Genus: use {{Taxobox genus entry | taxon = }}
  • Species: use {{Taxobox species entry | taxon = }}

The full list of classifications is found in the #Complete classification section above, but in general only the seven major ranks need to be listed. Intermediate ranks like suborders and superclasses should only be added when they are well-recognised and provide some insight into the nature of the taxon in question.

Red Wood Ant
{{{status}}}
Fossil range: {{{fossil_range}}}
[[Image:{{{image}}}|200px|]]
Scientific classification
Domain: {{{domain}}}
Superkingdom: {{{superregnum}}}
Kingdom: Animalia
Subkingdom: {{{subregnum}}}
Superdivision: {{{superdivisio}}}
Superphylum: {{{superphylum}}}
Division: {{{divisio}}}
Phylum: Arthropoda
Subdivision: {{{subdivisio}}}
Subphylum: {{{subphylum}}}
Infraphylum: {{{infraphylum}}}
Microphylum: {{{microphylum}}}
Nanophylum: {{{nanophylum}}}
Superclass: {{{superclassis}}}
Class: Insecta
Sublass: {{{subclassis}}}
Infraclass: {{{infraclassis}}}
Superorder: {{{superordo}}}
Order: Hymenoptera
Suborder: {{{subordo}}}
Infraorder: {{{infraordo}}}
Superfamily: {{{superfamilia}}}
Family: Formicidae
Subfamily: Formicinae
Supertribe: {{{supertribus}}}
Tribe: Formicini
Subtribe: {{{subtribus}}}
Genus: Formica
Subgenus: {{{subgenus}}}
Section: {{{sectio}}}
Series: {{{series}}}
Species: F. rufa
Subspecies: {{{subspecies}}}
[[{{{diversity_link}}}|Diversity]]
{{{diversity}}}
Binomial name
Formica rufa
Linnaeus, 1761
Trinomial name
{{{trinomial}}}
Type Species
{{{type_species}}}
{{{subdivision_ranks}}}
[[Image:{{{range_map}}}|{{{range_map_width}}}|]]
Synonyms
{{{synonyms}}}

For instance, consider the taxobox shown at right. For most readers, just including the major ranks would be more than enough information, but the subfamily and tribe may provide some insight to those interested in the relationships between different ants. On the other hand, adding things like domain Eukaryota, subkingdom Protostomia, subphylum Hexapoda, and so forth is mostly useless since they tend to be unstable and, depending on how much biology the reader has seen, will either be completely obvious or completely obscure.

A good rule to follow is to omit intermediate ranks above major ranks that have separate articles where the information is already provided. In cases where the classification is totally uncertain, it may even be worth omitting major ranks. On the other hand, in some cases intermediate ranks are better-known than the others. Use your discretion.

Note that species and subspecies should be given using the abbreviated forms of their name - e.g. H. sapiens, H. s. sapiens. Currently many pages give the species and subspecies epithets by themselves; this is left over from an earlier standard.

Footer[edit]

For species and subspecies, the footer gives the binomial name or trinomial name. There are six different templates to do this, depending on whether the authority is included. For taxa of higher rank, the footer usually gives its subdivision.

In some cases additional material may be added to the footer; these are still under discussion. Most notably, range maps should probably be added by using a second {{Taxobox image ...}} tag just before {{Taxobox end}}.

Subdivision footer[edit]

{{Taxobox section subdivision | color = | plural_taxon = }}
subgroup 1<br />
subgroup 2<br />
...
{{Taxobox end}}

Footer, binomial name, with authority[edit]

{{Taxobox section binomial | color = | binomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

Footer, trinomial name, with authority[edit]

{{Taxobox section trinomial | color = | trinomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

Footer, binomial name, with authority in parentheses[edit]

Use this closing or the next one when the type author's original assignment for the species has been changed. For instance, it was originally named Genus1 species1, and later someone shows that it should have been Genus2 species1.

{{Taxobox section binomial parens | color = | binomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

Footer, trinomial name, with authority in parentheses[edit]

{{Taxobox section trinomial parens | color = | trinomial_name = | author = | date = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

Footer, binomial name, without authority[edit]

{{Taxobox section binomial simple | color = | binomial_name = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

Footer, trinomial name, without authority[edit]

{{Taxobox section trinomial simple | color = | trinomial_name = }}
{{Taxobox end}}

Footer, binomial name, botanical authority[edit]

Use this closing for botanical taxoboxes, which show the author but not the date.

{{Taxobox section binomial botany | color = | binomial_name = | author = }}
{{Taxobox end}}