Chronicles of Nature are a standard report format in use since the 1960s that collects the annual for phenology and biodiversity data in the region’s nature reserves. These reports include data gathered by professional researchers using standardized methodologies in a system of very strictly protected areas, or zapovedniks, that represents the world’s first continent-wide long-term monitoring scheme, initiated decades before LTER and NEON and is, at many sites, ongoing.
Taken together, each Chronicles series represents a long-term dataset on phenological phenomena, including the abundance and diversity of animals and plants, providing an important source for assessing changing patterns of biodiversity, including impacts of climate change. These Chronicles are not yet digitized in many reserves, meaning that some long-term datasets have not appeared in scientific literature and remain unavailable to researchers.
The Prioksko-Terrasny Biosphere Reserve was the first Russian institution responsible for managing of especially protected natural territories to publish its Chronicles dataset through GBIF.org. This project aims to provide a template for mobilizing data from Chronicles elsewhere by:
- sharing the experience of the Prioksko-Terrasny Biosphere Reserve with staff of other Russian protected areas
- training employees of scientific departments of other institutions under the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment of the Russian Federation (Minprirody)
- preparing Russian-language guides for digitizing data from Chronicles of Nature reports
The project expects to lead to the publication of more than 20,000 new records of biodiversity and phenological data from European Russia nature reserves through GBIF.org.