Viewing Sakhalin as a necessary extension of our seven years of work in the Kurils, and realizing the scientific, social, and political advantages of a detailed biological survey of this little known island, curators and staff of the University of Washington Burke Museum (UW) will join with Japanese scientists, primarily from the Sapporo, Hakodate, and Kushiro campuses of Hokkaido University (HU), and Russian scientists from the Russian Academy of Sciences, Far East Branch, Vladivostok (RAS), to conduct a five-year program having the following objectives:

  1. Inventory existing collections of Sakhalin plants and animals at the various institutes of the Russian Academy of Sciences (in Vladivostok, Magadan, St. Petersburg, Moscow, Novosibirsk, and Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk) and in Japanese universities and museums (primarily in Sapporo, Hakodate, and Tokyo);

  2. Survey all the major habitats of Sakhalin Island, focusing on lichens, mosses, liverworts, fungi, plants, insects, spiders, freshwater and terrestrial mollusks, freshwater fishes, amphibians, and reptiles (unfortunately, logistics prevent the inclusion of additional taxa, e.g., birds and mammals; see Taxonomic Breadth;

  3. Sort, identify, and curate whole specimens and ethanol-fixed tissue collections for future study;

  4. Develop a database of collection localities, specimens, and taxa for use in later studies;

  5. Make the immediate results of the survey—databases, written information, as well as preserved collections—widely available as quickly as possible to researchers around the world;

  6. Provide training, field experience, and research opportunities for students and professional biologists of all three participating nations; and

  7. Describe new species, publish various articles in the popular and peer-reviewed literature, and prepare keys, guides, and annotated checklists of the biota of Sakhalin Island

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