Welcome to the Maine Natural History Project’s Checklist home page.
Purpose of the checklist web pages: Over time many checklists have been compiled for the plants, animals, fungi, etc., that have been observed in Maine or in the air above the state or in the ocean immediately adjacent to it’ coastline. Not only has there been much duplication of effort, many of the checklists reside in relatively obscure locations. The purpose of each of the web pages linked to from this page (please see below) is to bring together into one accessible place the information contained in those various checklists as well as to expand them to include additional observations made by citizen scientists.
How these web page links are organized. This page contains taxonomically arranged links to checklists of Maine’s animals, fungi, lichens, algae, and plants. When you click on a link, you will be taken to a checklist of species reported from Maine for that taxon. Note: These checklists were originally for species of Mount Desert Island, but they are being expanded to cover the entire state of Maine. Until this expansion is complete, which will take months or perhaps a few years, some lists will still mention Mount Desert Island.
How to contribute to these web pages. All information (observations, questions, photographs, notices of events, etc.) for any page(s) of the Maine Natural History Project website should be sent to email@example.com or mailed to the address at the top of this page. Credit will be given to submitters, or, if desired, information can be posted anonymously. Suggestions for additional topics are encouraged. A little work for each of us will save a lot of work for all of us.
A brief history of classification.
Living organisms were divided at one time into two kingdoms: Kingdom Animalia (animals) and Kingdom Plantae (plants). Perhaps you used to play the guessing game “Animal, Vegetable, or Mineral”.
In the late 1960s came the five-kingdom classification: Kingdoms Monera, Protista (sometimes called Protoctista), Fungi, Animalia, and Plantae (sometimes called Metaphyta).
With the advent of molecular biology, which has made it possible to sequence DNA, and with computers, which have made previously impossible calculations manageable, we have a better understanding of the evolutionary relationships among organisms.
Today, three domains (a grouping above the kingdom level) are now recognized: Bacteria, Archaea, and Eukarya. The first two domains contain the prokaryotes (all formerly in Kingdom Monera). Eukarya, as the name suggests, includes the eukaryotes. All of the groups below are eukaryotes and belong in domain Eukarya.
Below is a taxonomically arranged list of major groups of organisms that have been reported from Maine. If you click on any of the links immediately below, you will be taken to a web page for that taxonomic group.
Kingdom Animalia - animals
Phylum Porifera - sponges
Phylum Cnidaria - anemones and jellyfish
Phylum Ctenophora - comb jellies
Phylum Platyhelminthes - flatworms
Phylum Nemertea - ribbon-worms
Phylum Rotifera - rotifers
Phylum Kinorhyncha - kinorhynchs
Phylum Priapula - priapulids
Phylum Entoprocta - goblet-worms
Phylum Annelida - segmented worms
Phylum Arthropoda - arthropods (e.g., arachnids, lobster, crabs, insects)
Class Arachnida - arachnids (e.g., spiders, harvestmen, mites)
Order Pseudoscorpiionida - book scorpions
Order Aranae - spiders
Order Opiliones - harvestmen (“daddy longlegs”)
Order Acari - ticks
Class Malacostraca - crustaceans
Order Decapoda - decapod crustaceans
Class Hexapoda - insects
Order Collembola - springtails
Order Diplura - diplurans
Order Zygentoma - silverfish
Order Ephemeroptera - mayflies
Order Odonata - damselflies, dragonflies
Order Orthoptera - grasshoppers, katydids, crickets
Order Plecoptera - stoneflies
Order Dermaptera - earwigs
Phylum Arthropoda, (continued)
Class Hexapoda (continued)
Order Mantodea - mantids
Order Blattodea - cockroaches
Order Hemiptera - bugs, cicadas, aphids, etc.
Order Thysanoptera - thrips
Order Psocoptera - psocids
Order Phthiraptera - lice
Order Coleoptera - beetles
Order Neuroptera - neuropterans
Order Hymenoptera - bees, wasps, ants, etc.
Order Trichoptera - caddisflies
Order Lepidoptera (butterflies, skippers)
Order Lepidoptera (moths)
Order Siphonaptera - fleas
Order Mecoptera - scorpionflies
Order Strepsiptera - twisted-wing parasites
Order Diptera - flies, mosquitoes
Phylum Mollusca - mollusks (e.g., periwinkles, clams)
Phylum Echinodermata - echinoderms (e.g., sand dollars, sea stars, sea urchins)
Phylum Chordata - chordates (fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals)
Class Pisces - fish
Order Osteichthyes - bony fish
Class Amphibia - frogs, toads, salamanders
Class Reptilia - turtles, snakes
Class Aves - birds
Class Mammalia - mammals
Kingdom Fungi - fungi
Division Ascomycota - ascomycetes
Division Basidiomycota - basidiomycetes
Lichens - lichens
Algae - algae
Division Phaeophyta - brown algae
Division Rhodophyta - red algae
Division Chlorophyta - green algae
Kingdom Plantae - “Bryophytes”
Division Marchantiophyta - liverworts
Division Anthocerophyta - hornworts
Division Bryophyta - mosses
Kingdom Plantae - higher vascular plants