Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History

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What are type specimens?
 Heteroconger  hassi

In taxonomy, the science of identifying, naming, and classifying species, the primary type specimen (or sometimes a series of specimens) serves as the scientific name-bearing representative for any animal or plant species. A secondary type specimen is a specimen of the type series other than a primary type. A primary type is the objective standard of reference for the identification and naming of species.

Type specimens are important to scientists that study the classification of organisms and to all studies of comparative biology.

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