1. The collaborator who sent you the tissue may have filled out the BOLD Specimen Data Sheet already, in which case you just have to look over it to make sure that all the information was put in the correct areas.
  1. If you were not sent a completed form, but just an excel sheet instead, you have to put the information you have for the specimens you have into a BOLD Specimen Data Sheet which can be downloaded here: Coming soon The data sheet template is also found on the Companion CD for submitting Data to Barcode of Life Data System which you can get from BIO. When you are filling out the sheet, remember that you cannot add additional columns, and even if you do the information you put in them will not appear on BOLD.
  1. To submit a BOLD specimen data sheet, you need to at least have Sample ID, Field ID, Institution Storing, and Phylum.
  1. If you are copying and pasting information onto the BOLD spreadsheet, you have to only use Paste Special and select Values as to not write over formulas in the spreadsheet.
  1. On the Voucher Info page, enter the Sample ID. If you enter it on any other page it will write over important macros. The specimens may or may not come with a Sample ID, if they do not have one then you must create it. For example, if the BOLD project code is YIFOA then the first sample that you have could have the Sample ID YIFOA-0001 and the second YIFOA-0002, etc. Bear in mind that each project in BOLD can have a maximum of 999 specimen records.
  1. The Field ID is the number on the specimen that was given by someone working with it (for example, you might get a box of butterflies with paper numbers on then that relate to the spread sheet that you got with them). If there is no Field ID, copy the Sample ID into the Field ID column.
  1. The Museum ID should be put there only if a museum has actually cataloged it.
  1. The Collection Code is the code associated with a certain collection.
  1. Institution Storing must be filled out for each sample. This is the location of the voucher specimen, not the pieces of tissue that you received. For example, if Some Scientist sent a box of tissue, the institution storing may be Research collection of Some Scientist or the name of the university they work at. If the sample is from a museum, the Institution Storing is the name of the museum.
  1. Fill in the Sample Donor and Donor E-mail.
  1. On the Taxonomy page fill out the taxonomy to what is known, with at least phylum. To find all the taxonomic information for fish a helpful website is
  1. Enter the Identifier, Identifier Email, and Identifier Institution if they are known.
  1. On the Specimen Details page enter all known information. Sex is M for male, F for female, or H for Hermaphrodite. Reproduction means the type of life cycle (S is sexual, A is asexual, P is parthenogenic). Life Stage is either “I” for immature or “A” for adult. Extra info can show up on the taxonomic tree on BOLD, this place is generally used for the FAO region. Notes will not be seen on the tree, but it will appear on BOLD on the Specimen Page.
  1. On the Collection Data page, put in any information that is known. Under Collector enter the name of the person who collected the specimen. Collection Date is the date that the specimen was collected. Enter the information for Continent/Ocean , Country, State/Province, Region, Sector, Exact Site, Latitude, Longitude, and Elevation.
  1. Latitude (North-South) and Longitude (East-West) have to be put into decimal format. A useful website for this conversion is
  1. Elevation has to be in meters, but it is not necessary to put “m” for meters beside the number.
  1. Submit the BOLD data sheet to Megan in BIO at For an example of the e-mail you need to send, see Example E-mail for BOLD Specimen Data Sheet.

Next, complete the Plate Records or Box Records to put the specimens on LIMS.

Return to Barcoding in the Hanner Lab Wiki.

Updated: April 27 2009