In 2011-2013, Plant Conservation Action group (PCA) initiated a project with the Seychelles National Herbarium (SEY) to digitize the Herbarium collections and species occurrence data from literature, allowing to define 75 Key Biodiversity Areas (KBAs). This became known as the KBA-Herbarium database and has now evolved into a National Biodiversity Database called Bio. Since 2013, ongoing projects led by PCA members have developed Smartphone tools to collect biodiversity data. As a consequence, the database has grown from 23,000 to 48,000 records.
We would like to use these new data to update the KBA assessment using international guidelines. We also want to include the ecosystem criteria which are particularly important to fine tune the delineation of KBAs. Considering that many KBAs are overlapping with privately owned land parcels, and that the Government of Seychelles is currently developing Nomination Files to raise some KBAs to a protection status, an internationally recognized assessment will be essential for discussion with all stakeholders.
In addition, this grant is an opportunity to formally share our data on species occurrences with GBIF, securing data ownership while facilitate sharing of our data beyond the Seychelles.
Impacts of the activities planned under this project will include:
- Published datasets on GBIF for species occurrence and sampling-event data
- First Red List of Ecosystems (RLE) for the Western Indian Ocean using IUCN criteria
- First KBA assessment done in the Western Indian Ocean using international guidelines
- Awareness materials, including a booklet and a filmed documentary to popularize the knowledge developed for decision-makers, conservation planners and other stakeholders
- Greater opportunities for international collaboration
- Establish a GBIF Participant Node for the Seychelles