Benefiting from the impact and existing resources of a previous BIFA-funded project, this new effort aims to continue mobilizing the remaining Vietnamese bryophyte and lichen collections held in other Vietnamese herbaria and in foreign countries. These collections include the largest available material from Vietnamese bryophytes and lichens and provide together a nearly complete picture of cryptogam flora in Vietnam.
The core activities include visits to the cryptogam collections at the Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle (MNHN) in France, where thousands of specimens collected from Vietnam during the first half of the 20th century awaiting digitization. At the Eszterhazy Karoly University of Applied Sciences in Hungary, more than 1500 bryophyte specimens still needed to be identified and digitalized. The project also plans visits to collections at the South West Heritage Trust in the UK as well as the National Arboretum and the Lichen Research Institute—both in South Korea.
Once published, the data from these historical collections will help in future work to clarify and re-assess the status of cryptogam observations in Vietnam—especially important for taxa now reported as endemic to Vietnam.
Publishing data to GBIF is an effective way to attract research on understudied groups, such as bryophytes and lichens, and to promote this trend of data mobilization in Vietnam, the project team will also organize a local workshop focusing on mobilizing data to GBIF. After the workshop, the university partners and other researchers will be able to digitalize, mobilize and manage their own database.