Seasons Greetings from Lucid
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Identification and Diagnostic Tools
Lucid December 2023 Newsletter

Hello and welcome to the final edition of our newsletter for 2023. We hope you enjoy reading this newsletter and we look forward to working with you in 2024.

Happy holidays and best wishes from all the Lucid team.


Matt Taylor

PS. Please note our offices and support desk will be closed from Thursday 23rd December until 1st January 2024.

Spotlight - International Seed Morphology Association

International Seed Morphology Association

Detachable plant parts, commonly a seed or fruit, are capable of being disseminated for propagating the species. These agents can also result in the long-distance spread of invasive plants and weeds. International marketing of seeds, grains, or other agricultural goods, which may be contaminated with unwanted seeds, can dramatically increase the  spread of these seeds beyond their natural distribution range, and constitute serious quarantine risks to distant, importing countries. Therefore, identification of intercepted seeds, to determine the family, genus, and species of intercepted seeds, can be critically important in assessing this risk across regions and borders and in determining appropriate quarantine action. 

To contribute and to encourage international seed identification activities, a collaborative project in 2017 established the International Seed Morphology Association. This digital platform consists of an online learning portal, a peer-support forum, and a Seed Identification Guide, which includes peer-reviewed, seed identification fact sheets, Lucid matrix identification keys, and a glossary of botanical terminologies. 

Currently, ISMA hosts over 140 ID fact sheets and three seed keys:

Seeds of invasive plants

ISMA is making a significant effort to develop publication resources and an author pool to speed up knowledge sharing in seed identification. Meantime, a learning portal will be continuously developed with AI technologies to assist the need for training and identification.

A Review of Digital Identification Tools for Plant Biosecurity

DIT Review

Geoff Norton and Matt Taylor have been part of a team that has recently published this Review. The 11 authors include members of a team involved in a ‘Quadrilateral’ project (USA, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand) on Digital Identification Tools, as well as other authors from Europe and China. This Review is freely available as a pdf download as well as an online publication via the website of the International Association for the Plant Protection Sciences. The online version allows the review to be translated to local languages via Google Translate. 

Latest keys

West African rice arthropods Lucid key - French edition

The recently published Lucid pathway key to West African rice arthropods (in English) has now been converted to a French language version. Google translate was used to convert the key data and related text to French and then checked and updated by Dr Souleymane Nacro (IAPPS West/Central Africa Region Board member), using technical terms where appropriate. Current plans are to convert the English language version of the related Asian rice arthropod key to several Asian language versions.


Marine benthic dinoflagellate genera (Dinophyceae)

Marine benthic dinoflagellate genera dinophyceae book cover

Dinoflagellates are protists (unicellular eukaryotes) of microscopic size (most 10–100 μm). The taxonomy of dinoflagellates is dealing with morphospecies concepts, the most practical and informative approach describing and distinguishing species in the past as well as today (Hoppenrath 2017).

This key, which includes 61 of the benthic dinoflagellate genera, excluding Glenodinium and Symbiodiniales, is part (appendix) of the book “Marine benthic dinoflagellates – their relevance for science and society” (Hoppenrath et al. 2023).


Australian Mistletoe

The Australian Mistletoe Key covers the aerial mistletoes of the families Loranthaceae and Santalaceae. Parasitic trees and shrubs of these families are not included.


A key to the Indo-Pacific reef coral genera (Skeletons)

This pathway key for the identification of all genera of Indo-Pacific reef corals (skeletons only) is primarily based on the photos and work done by the late Mr. Hans Ditlev, M.Sc. (1946-2013). He was a coral specialist educated and working at Aarhus University, Denmark.

This key can only be used for identification of coral skeletons – not corals with the living soft parts. Current work includes a key for identification of living corals with a Lucid AI (Artificial Intelligence) model under development.


Key to the Native Orchids of Western Australia

Key to the Native Orchids of Western Australia is an interactive identification and information package that will help you identify and learn about all the currently known native orchids found in Western Australia (excluding hybrids).

It is designed for flowering plants and works best when they are fresh and observed in the field. It can also be used to identify orchids from Herbarium specimens but may not work as well as it does with fresh specimens in the field. The key is not designed to work with vegetative plants.

Key to the Native Orchids of Western Australia has been sponsored by the Western Australian Native Orchid Study and Conservation Group (WANOSCG) and developed by its members.

The key is aimed at both amateur orchid enthusiasts and professional researchers alike. You can use it to:

  • identify an unknown orchid;
  • find out what orchids occur in different areas or habitats;
  • find out which orchids flower in different months of the year;
  • find out which orchids are listed as Threatened or Priority species;
  • view descriptions and photos of all the orchids contained in the key; and
  • learn more about Western Australia’s unique orchids.


Ramón Newmann and Andrew Brown for the Western Australian Native Orchid Study and Conservation Group.


Rainforest Plants of Australia - Rockhampton to Victoria - 2nd edition coming soon

Rainforests Plants of Australia – Rockhampton to Victoria has been substantially revised and updated to reflect the currently accepted names and distribution of rainforest trees, shrubs and climbing plants in this area. In all (compared to the previous edition, first published in 2016) there are 1156 taxa described, an increase of 16 species. Over 70 name changes for species are included, as well as family name changes and many geographical distribution updates to reflect present knowledge. Considerably more images of the species are included.

This popular key is available on both Android and Apple iOS.


Apple iOS

Recent Visitors

Dr Tom Croat (Missouri Botanical Garden)

Matt Taylor and Geoff Norton recently met with Dr Tom Croat (Missouri Botanical Garden) during his visit to Brisbane, Australia to discuss his plans for a series of Lucid keys to aroids. The Araceae is a large tropical family with large to massive genera. According to Dr Croat, the genus Anthurium is likely to be the largest genus of higher plants in the world and already is known to have 2000 species.

Obviously when dealing with genera of this size keeping track of the species in one’s head is impossible, and the Lucid key technology is essential. At present Dr Croat has prepared Lucid keys for most of the largest genera in the Neotropics including Anthurium and Philodendron (the two largest genera in the family) as well as to Adelonema, Dieffenbachia, Dracontium, Rhodospatha, Spathiphyllum, Stenospermation and Xanthosoma.

Many aroids are proving to be undescribed species and has already described over 3000 new species of Araceae. Presently he is experimenting with ways to use the Lucid 4 Builder to construct the dichotomous keys that are usually demanded of editors when revisions of genera are being published. Recently, with Missouri Botanical Garden Aroid Research Group member, Bob Hormell, he has finished writing a Revision of Anthurium sect.

Cardiolonchium, a group that contains some of the more horticulturally popular plants such as Anthurium sanquineum and A. warocqueanum so the publication of this work is likely to be of great significance to horticulturists and gardeners world-wide.  We will keep you posted about the progress of these keys in a future newsletter. 

Software Updates

Lucid v4

Lucid v4 

Seven Lucid update were posted posted this year (v4.0.37 20230731 is the latest).

Trial edition:

To see the release details, visit:

Fact Sheet Fusion

Fact Sheet Fusion

A new update is now available for Fact Sheet Fusion (v2.05.199).

Trial edition:


Download the new versions if you haven't already done so: 

Download (login required) via:


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