QVMAG uploads 104,916 zoology records to global database

Natural Sciences Collection QVMAG Launceston

Image: specimens from the Natural Sciences collection at the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery. 

The Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery reached an exciting milestone earlier this month, with 104,916 zoological research records uploaded to the global research platform - the Atlas of Living Australia.

These zoological data records from the QVMAG collection are freely available, not just in Australia, but to researchers around the globe.

The result of years of research, the upload represents a refresh of data records representing the Natural Sciences collection at QVMAG, alongside 8000 new records and 295 specimen images.

Each record upload will provide researchers with accurate specimen and collection details, such as collection location, date, collector’s name and a range of additional information such as altitude, habitat, vegetation and ecosystem type.

QVMAG Collections Officer Simon Fearn said the upload is a significant milestone worthy of celebration.

'This is quite a milestone for our institution, and for researchers across Australia and the globe,' Fearn said.

'Each year we undertake a range of field research trips to better understand the distribution and habitat preferences of Tasmania's amazing invertebrate fauna.

Natural Sciences Collection Specimens at QVMAG

Image: specimens within the QVMAG Natural Sciences collection. 

'These specimens represent a 'library' of biodiversity which allows us to work with researchers around the world to identify and catalogue our specimens. Through these trips many poorly known, or 'rediscovered' species are identified from our fieldwork, as well as many new records for Northern Tasmania.

'This is a valuable process as it adds to our knowledge of what species exist, their habitat preferences and hence distribution on our island. Such information is vital to land managers of all types in making rational decisions around land use and conservation.

'We frequently receive queries from researchers across Australia and the world regarding our Natural Sciences collection, which only further highlights the importance of living collections such as ours at QVMAG.'

Researchers, students and citizen scientists can explore these zoological research records for free online at the Atlas of Living Australia (www.ala.org.au).

Data from the Atlas of Living Australia feeds into the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF), which is an international network aimed at providing anyone, anywhere, open access to data about all types of life on Earth. 

Issued Wednesday 28 September 2022.