Biodiversity Resources

The following resources are used by OBIS Australia to identify potential datasets for OBIS, validate or test the taxonomy of existing records.

If there are additional resources you use to acquire or manage biological data, please let us know.

Atlas of Living Australia (ALA)

Atlas of Living Australia (ALA) is a collaborative, national project that aggregates biodiversity data from multiple sources and makes it freely available and usable online. It is the Australian node of the Global Biodiversity Facility GBIF. A separate animal tracking data portal ZoaTrack is now part of ALA.

Data can be downloaded as plain csv or in a format consistent with Darwin Core.

There is a rich set of web services and R code to access data.

World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS)

World Register of Marine Species (WoRMS) is an authoritative and comprehensive list of names of marine organisms, including information on synonymy. While the highest priority goes to valid names, other names in use are included so that this register can serve as a guide to interpret taxonomic literature.

There are webservices to query WoRMS and it uses "Near" (fuzzy) matching algorithm for locating misspelled species scientific names.

Interim Register of Marine and Nonmarine Genera (IRMNG)

Interim Register of Marine and Nonmarine Genera (IRMNG) is a compilation of genus names (with authors) covering "all life", in a coherent taxonomic hierarchy, with flags indicating marine vs. nonmarine, and extant vs. fossil status; also includes species in a subset of cases. IRMNG was developed and based at CSIRO, Australia from 2006-2014, and from 2016 onwards it is now hosted at VLIZ, Belgium.

There are webservices to query IMRNG and it uses "Near" (fuzzy) matching algorithm for locating misspelled species scientific names.

For a description of IRMNG, see the MarLIN metadata record IRMNG - Interim Register of Marine and Nonmarine Genera.

Australian Faunal Directory (AFD)

The Australian Faunal Directory (AFD) is a free online public enquiry database that provides taxonomic and biological information on the Australian fauna. providing information on:

To find the AFD identifier for a species, use the ALA taxa search page to find your species. For example, the Wandering Albatross page at ALA is https://bie.ala.org.au/species/urn:lsid:biodiversity.org.au:afd.taxon:da91b145-6eac-44b7-9465-cb4fc754af24. The AFD identifier is urn:lsid:biodiversity.org.au:afd.taxon:da91b145-6eac-44b7-9465-cb4fc754af24,

A zipped file of all AFD names can be retrieved from https://biocache.ala.org.au/archives/nameindexes/latest/.

Codes for Australian Aquatic Biota (CAAB)

Codes for Australian Aquatic Biota (CAAB) is a catalogue of species names (linked where possible to WoRMS) and project specific names for initial identifications of catch data from surveys conducted by CSIRO on various ships and most notably recent surveys using the Marine National Facilites RV Investigator.

For a description of CAAB, see the MarLIN metadata record Codes for Australian Aquatic Biota (CAAB)

Biodiversity Information Standards TDWG

TDWG aim is the development of standards for the exchange of biological/biodiversity data. For OBIS, the most important format for publishing and exchanging data is Darwin Core. The Integrated Publishing Toolkit from GBIF uses this standard to match your data to the Darwin Core terms ensuring that published data conforms to this vocabulary.

For further details of DarwinCore see the following publication.

OBIS Australia Publications

Media releases, publications, and downloadable presentations describing the activities of OBIS Australia:

This site is hosted by the CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere Information and Data Centre, Australia. Please advise any problems with this website to the OBISAU Node Manager.    View Privacy Statement