Agricultural production continues to be hampered by both native and invasive insect and mite pests. Adequate biological information is essential for timely identification and management. This project will mobilize biodiversity information from specimens in agricultural insect collections with these Cameroonian institutions:
- Institute of Agricultural Research for Development (IRAD)
- International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) & Congo Basin Institute (CBI) in Yaoundé
- University of Douala (UDL)
The project team will take steps to help reorganize and upgrade collections while prioritizing specimens for ditigization and providing training to collections staff in good practices for data mobilization. Once georeferenced and properly validated, the team will publish records to GBIF.org via the CAMBIF IPT installation.
The published data will allow for the production of checklists of native and introduced pests in Cameroon to aid in management by crop protection specialists from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.
The project has been progressing with the identification, sorting and labelling of specimens from the three agricultural insect collections in Cameroon. The information of specimens has been entered into databases using GBIF templates for each institution. As part of the project, IRAD has been registered as data publisher with GBIF and it is expected that IITA and UDL will be endorsed by CAMBIF to become registered institutions. Up to now, more than 4760, 5630 and 200 specimens have been captured by IRAD, IITA and UDL databases respectively. Work has been carried out to validate the scientific names copied in the IRAD collection using GBIF tools. A portion of the IRAD database containing 780 insect specimens is ready for publishing. Specimens from the other datasets are being published throughout the project timeline.
Two workshops were organised in Douala and Yaounde that have provided stakeholders with training on data mobilisation through the GBIF platform and good practices. The content of these workshops have focused on general presentation of the GBIF network, data collection, georeferencing and the data publication process. Work will now be carried out on the datasets as they are prepared for publication.