Software identification tools for biodiversity and biosecurity monitoring
- Centre for Biological Information Technology, The University of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
The taxonomic crisis, associated with declining taxonomic expertise and resources, poses serious problems for biodiversity and biosecurity monitoring and management. While there has been a dramatic increase in the amount of taxonomic information available on the Web, resulting from such global initiatives as Species 2000, All Species and the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF), the lack of identification services has meant this information is often not accessible to many potential users. Apart from the immediate problems raised by the inability of ecologists, conservation managers, plant health inspectors and other practitioners to identify specimens of concern, this in turn means they are also unable to access the increasing wealth of information about particular organisms that is potentially available to them.