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FuTRES Ontology of Vertebrate Traits (FOVT)

This ontology is to map measurable vertebrate traits. We leverage the BioCollections Ontology (BCO) to link observations of individual specimens to their trait values. Traits are defined in the Ontology of Biological Attributes (OBA).

More information on the ontology can be found at (once ontology is registered).

More information on FuTRES is available at


  1. Check if needed parts of term are in UBERON or OBA.
  2. Add needed part of term to UBERON (7500000-7999999).
  3. Import and add terms to OBA.
  4. Import terms to FOVT, and import to GEOME see @JDeck88.

Term Requests

New term requests can be made by creating an issue.

Please provide:

  1. anatomical feature (e.g., bone)
  2. anatomical points and/or anatomical axis (e.g., humerus caput to ventral trochlea or lateral side)
  3. measurement (e.g., length, diameter, circumference) and direction (e.g., medial-lateral, dorsal-ventral)
  4. reference for measurement
  5. any synonyms (e.g., length ML as a synonym for breadth, width as a synonym for breadth)

You can also use this feature to request synonyms and references for existing terms.

Term Naming Conventions

  • avoid minimum and maximum lengths, unless both are used (e.g., minimum palatine length and minimum palatine length) and there are no definitive points
  • side-bone-measurement (e.g., left occipital length)
  • bone-anatomical position-measurement (e.g., humerus lateral length)
  • only use length and axis; avoid "breadth", "depth", and "width" (e.g., humerus length ML)


Stable release versions

The latest version of the ontology can always be found at:

(note this will not show up until the request has been approved by

Editors' version

Editors of this ontology should use the edit version, src/ontology/fovt-edit.owl


Please use this GitHub repository's Issue tracker to request new terms/classes or report errors or specific concerns related to the ontology.


FuTRES is funded by the National Science Foundation grant #

This ontology repository was created using the ontology starter kit