Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
The University of Manitoba campuses are located on original lands of Anishinaabeg, Cree, Oji-Cree, Dakota, and Dene peoples, and on the homeland of the M├ętis Nation. More

Biology: Species Information

A biology subject guide for University of Manitoba students.

What are you looking for...

A scientific name for an organism

Scholarly information about a species

A starting point for gathering species information

Good websites for species information

A way to get a source for free

A scientific name for an organism

To find a species scientific name, you may want to try one of the following resources:

Scholarly information about a species

Below are three best biology databases to use for searching for scholarly information about a species.

Zoological Record - species searching tip!!

If you go to the Advanced Search in Zoological Record and use the field SY= scientific species name, then you can search for journal articles with that specific species in it.  You must use the scientific species name in the SY= example/ SY=bison bison; no common names will be accepted.  This search strategy is more accurate then a topic search for the species name.

A starting point for gathering species information

STEP 1: Answer these questions before searching.

1. What is the scientific name for the species?
Knowing this information can help you quickly search in a database such as Zoological Record because the scientific literature will use a species' scientific name more often than the species common name.

2. Are there alternative spellings for the species' scientific name? 
Be sure when you search for species information to use alternative spellings as well as the standard spelling to get all literature related to your species.

3. Has the species been reclassified? 
Species do get reclassified and with reclassification often comes a new scientific name.  Be aware of this because some scientific literature may use the older scientific name and not the new one.  

4. Where is the species located? 
Knowing where the species is located can help you to identify books that cover species in from that area. For example, if the species is located in Argentina, the species may be mentioned in a book about flora and fauna of South America. 

STEP 2: Select where to search

Good starting points are ...

STEP 3: Do a search and gather resources

Do a few searches and collect sources that you can use.

Websites for species information

Here are some free, useful and scholarly web resources that contain information about species.

A way to get a source for free

If you have found an article online that is asking for you to purchase it or the University of Manitoba Libraries does not own a copy of a journal article, book, etc. You can get for free through the Libraries' Document Delivery service.

Biology Librarian

Profile Photo
Maureen Babb


Image: White text on blue background with round thought bubbles Text: Ask Us