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AUSTRALIA’S VIRTUAL HERBARIUM

AUSTRALIA’S VIRTUAL HERBARIUM

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AUSTRALIA’S VIRTUAL HERBARIUM

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  1. AUSTRALIA’S VIRTUAL HERBARIUM Peter Neish Royal Botanic Gardens Melbourne

  2. What is a Virtual Herbarium? • The physical resources and biological information of a herbarium represented digitally • On-line access to herbaria and to botanical information managed by herbaria • Integrated access to botanical information from various sources in a herbarium and other on-line biological information

  3. What is the AVH? • A collaborative project of the Australian Herbarium community • Digital • Collaborative • On-line • Integrated • Partnership and shared access • Real-time access • Shared access to common authority files • Shared data-hosting, archiving and backup • Co-ownership

  4. Where is the AVH? • Spread across Australian herbaria • Data distributed; resides with custodians • Each herbarium has a portal to receive requests and to deliver data • A common single query AVH interface in each herbarium polls all herbaria Major Australian Herbaria

  5. AVH Partners State Herbarium of South Australia Queensland Herbarium Australian National Herbarium Northern Territory Herbarium Tasmanian Herbarium Industry Partner: KE Software National Herbarium of Victoria National Herbarium of New South Wales Western Australian Herbarium Australian Biological Resources Study

  6. Why is there an AVH? • Pressure on Herbaria to work more efficiently • Demand for access to larger amounts of data • Demand to access data more quickly • Demand to view data in different ways • Pressure on herbaria to appear and to be more responsive to community needs

  7. Potential users of the AVH • The participating herbaria have access to all the data at the highest precision • Public access filter restricts access to work in progress, sensitive locality data, etc. • Research and education • Public general interest • Access to conservation agencies, land managers, environmental decision makers

  8. There are problems • > 20,000 species of higher plants • > 64,000 available names • Extensive synonymy (4 names per plant) • Many alternative taxonomic concepts • 8 major government-funded herbaria • Similar number of university herbaria • > 6,500,000 specimens in Aust. herbaria • 50-100 data elements per specimen • Several Kb per specimen (excl. images)

  9. Specimen data from major herbaria

  10. Herbarium database statusat start of AVH project

  11. The AVH Agreement • $10M over 5 years to database all major Australian herbarium collections • $10 million: - $ 4 million Commonwealth - $ 4 million State/Territory - $ 2 million private • Initial focus on capture of herbarium specimen data • Ultimate aim is a complete flora information system

  12. Specimen data Core information is from herbarium specimens Collections data: • Scientific name • Collection date • Collector name & number • Location • Soils • Habitat (incl. topography) • Vegetation community • Associated species • Plant features, e.g. colour

  13. http://www.chah.gov.au/avh/

  14. Acacia salicina

  15. Related Products • On-line Flora information systems • Generally regionally based • Integrating: • Plant names • Descriptive Flora treatments • Illustrations • Distributions

  16. Botanical Literature

  17. A Flora in XML Example in HTML <p><b>Platyzomamicrophyllum</b>R.Br., <i>Prodr.</i> 160 (1810)</p> <p ><i>Gleichenia platyzoma</i> F.Muell., <i>Veg. Chatham.-Isl.</i> 63 (1864).T: Facing Island, Qld, <i>R.Brown Iter Austral. 102</i> ; lecto: BM.</p> <p>Illus.: S.B.Andrews…</p> <p>Rhizome short-creeping… Sporangia in zones in distal half of frond.Fig. 55</p> <p>Widespread across northern Australia… Grows in sandy or swampy soils....Map 135.</p> <p>W.A.: 14.4 km NW of Mt…</p> Example in XML <taxon><name>Platyzomamicrophyllum</name><author>R.Br</author>, <publication><title>Prodr.</title><page>160</page><date>1810</date></publication> <synonym> <name>Gleichenia platyzoma</name><author> F.Muell. </author><publication>Veg. Chatham.-Isl.</publication><page>63<page><date>1864</date><type>T: Facing Island, Qld, …</type></synonym> <illustration>Illus.: S.B.Andrews…</illustration> <description>Rhizome short-creeping… Sporangia in zones in distal half of frond. </description><figure>Fig. 55 </figure> <locality>Widespread across northern Australia… </locality><habitat>Grows in sandy or swampy soils...</habitat> <map>Map 135.</map> <specimens>W.A.: 14.4 km NW ofMt…</specimens></taxon>

  18. Flora Information Systems

  19. Botanical illustrations

  20. Portraits of Plant species National Plant Photograph Index Search on-line Some digital imagesavailable 35,000 images ofAustralian plantsand vegetation www.anbg.gov.au/anbg/photo-collection/

  21. Type Images on demand High resolution image oftype specimen of Austrobaileyadownloaded over the Internetfrom the Herbarium of theNew York Botanical Garden

  22. Interactive Plant Identification

  23. Invasive Plant Notification

  24. Regional Text-based Taxon-based Individual effort Singleuser Standalone Centralized Proprietary System Idiosyncratic Design Nonstandard data content Conventional Developmental Access charges Trends in Biodiverssity Information Management  Global  Image-based Spatially-based  Partnerships  Multiuser  Networked  Distributed  Open System  Standard Architecture  Standard data content  Innovative  Stable  Freely available

  25. Acknowledgements State Herbarium of South Australia Queensland Herbarium Australian National Herbarium Northern Territory Herbarium Tasmanian Herbarium Industry Partner: KE Software National Herbarium of Victoria National Herbarium of New South Wales Western Australian Herbarium Australian Biological Resources Study Jim Croft for slides