Occurrence records accessible through GBIF now present richer information following the release of a new version of the GBIF portal.
Users of the portal can access many more fields of information in the detailed occurrence record pages. This has been made possible thanks to the new distributed technologies recently adopted by GBIF, allowing use of multiple servers.
Previous versions of the portal displayed only about 30 of the 150 terms from the Darwin Core standard, whereas visitors to the portal can now access other details made available by the publisher. These include information such as sampling methodology, collectors’ names and field notes.
As an example, an occurrence record of a Plum fruited yew published by the Royal Botanic Garden in Edinburgh, provides in-depth notes of the habitat in which the plant was collected in Chile. Another page related to a record of a lichen specimen from a Kansas herbarium includes the recorders’ names and information about the soil conditions and other information on the location where the specimen was collected.
Downloads of these newly ‘widened’ occurrences contain all published information on each of the records.
A much-requested feature over the past year has been the ability to search occurrences by type status. Types refer to physical specimens kept in a museum or herbarium to which the name of that organism is formally attached. This information is therefore of critical importance to taxonomic researchers. The filter is now available on the occurrence search page, and allows queries such as the records designated as a Holotype.
The release is the first of a two-stage process to improve information available via the GBIF portal. The next release of the portal in the coming weeks will enable users to view images, and access audio and video files associated with occurrence records.
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