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.
In July 2019, the team held in collaboration with GBIF France and the University of Turku, Finland a seminar and workshop “GBIF and open data in biodiversity study”. The aim of the event was to share fundamental knowledge to enable partners and other researchers to digitalize, mobilize and manage their own databases, and workshop evaluation results showed positive feedback.
During September to mid-October the team visited the collections in Paris Herbarium and Eger Herbarium (EGR) for digitalization and mobilization of specimen data of Vietnamese bryophytes and lichens, and by mid-term reporting had published the dataset on Vietnamese Lichenized Fungi.
By the end of the project, the team published four new datasets with approximately 2,000 records and 1,400-1,500 images, updated three datasets related to the previous BIFA-funded project and incorporated about 3,000 additional Vietnamese bryophytes specimens into MNHM-Paris’ main database “The cryptogamy collection”.
Post-project the team will continue to improve the data digitization for the rest of the collections at the PHH Herbarium and update the datasets on GBIF. In addition to this, the team plans to continue preparing a data paper about Vietnam bryophytes and lichens collections, and develop their own website with a better interface to the datasets on GBIF.