A Californian by birth and education, I have been associated with the
University Herbarium at Berkeley continuously since 1948, with the
exception of an 8-year stint at the University of Illinois at
Champaign-Urbana. My interest in plants was manifested at a very early
age, but I wasn't introduced to the wonderful world of seaweeds until my
second year of college, when I took a field trip to the Palos Verdes
Peninsula near Los Angeles, at that time (1941) a nearly pristine area.
Music and gardening are my sources of recreation.
Paul C. Silva
1001 Valley Life Sciences Bldg., # 2465
Berkeley, CA 94720-2465
My M.A. thesis was a survey of the marine algae of the California coast
from Monterey southward to Point Conception, a hitherto nearly
inaccessible and unknown area. Thus began my enduring interest in
floristics and biogeography. Faced with an undescribed Codium
from subtidal southern California and adjacent Baja California, I tried
to determine where the new species fits into this genus of siphonous
green algae. Professor George F. Papenfuss generously gave me material of
several undescribed species from South Africa, which served as the basis
of my doctoral research. Nearly 50 years later I am still working toward
a world-wide monograph of this genus of about 120 species.
Most of my time and effort, however, has been devoted to compiling,
integrating, and interpreting nomenclatural, taxonomic, bibliographic,
and biographic data in phycology, encompassing algae in their widest
sense. These data are recorded on cards that constitute several files of
enormous utility. The Index Nominum Algarum (INA) attempts to
comprise all scientific names of algae, both extant and fossil, in all
taxonomic groups and in all ranks. The Bibliographia Phycologica
Universalis (BPU) is the accompanying bibliography.
During the past decade, effort has been directed to make these data
available electronically to the phycological community. The existence of
these files has faciliated immeasurably my contribution to the Index
Nominum Genericorum (Plantarum), Authors of Plant Names,
and Names in Current Use for Extant Plant Genera. Phycological
catalogs include one based on a single genus (Scenedesmus) and
two based on geographic regions (Philippines and the Indian Ocean). The
various card files are housed together with an extensive library in a
room designated "Center for Phycological Documentation".
also this list of publications up to 2002
- Silva, P. C. (1996).
- California seaweeds collected by the Malaspina Expedition,
especially Pelvetia (Fucales, Phaeophyceae). Madroño 43:
- Pedroche, F. F., and P. C. Silva (1996).
- Codium picturatum sp. nov.
(Chlorophyta), una especie extraordinaria del Pacifico tropical mexicano.
Bot. Mex. 35: 1-8.
- Silva, P. C., P. W. Basson, and R. L. Moe (1996).
- Catalogue of the benthic
marine algae of the Indian Ocean. Univ. Calif. Publ. Bot. 79. xiv + 1259
- Silva, P. C. (1996).
- Stability versus rigidity in botanical nomenclature. Beih.
Nova Hedwigia 112: 1-8.
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This page last updated February 27, 1997.