Navigation Links
Online biodiversity databases audited: 'Improvement needed'
Date:4/22/2013

The records checked were for native Australian millipede species and were published online by the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, GBIF and the Atlas of Living Australia, ALA. GBIF and ALA obtain most of their records from cooperating museums, but disclaim any responsibility for errors in museum databases, instead warning users that the data may not be accurate or fit for purpose.

The auditing was done voluntarily by Dr Bob Mesibov, who is a millipede specialist and a research associate at the Queen Victoria Museum and Art Gallery in Launceston, Tasmania.

The audit found duplicated records and other bookkeeping problems, as well as errors in scientific nomenclature and in locations and dates for specimen collections. Location errors were particularly common, with 15% of a 'best data' subset of the records at least 5 km from the correct locality.

"The data quality problem is not trivial," said Dr Mesibov. "On the one hand, the data aggregators like GBIF and ALA are telling the world that they offer one-stop shops for data that can, for example, greatly assist decision-making in conservation and land management. On the other hand, the aggregators are not working to ensure that the data they publish are correct. And bad data aren't very useful."

Dr Mesibov contacted museums directly to alert them to errors he found and to query inconsistencies in the occurrence records. The museums concerned have edited their records and will pass corrections on to GBIF and ALA when updating their contributions to the online databases. Error-correcting at the level of GBIF and ALA is slow and piecemeal, says Dr Mesibov, and should not have to rely on interested outsiders like himself.

"Data cleaning isn't rocket science," said Dr. Mesibov. "The aggregators could do much more checking and could collaborate with their providers in sorting out inconsistencies and fixing at least some of the errors. At the moment, that doesn't seem to be happening, so GBIF and ALA users need to take the aggregators' warnings about data quality very seriously."


'/>"/>

Contact: Dr. Bob Mesibov
mesibov@southcom.com.au
Pensoft Publishers
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Kauai, the Petrified Forest, Costa Rica, and more: New GSA Bulletin articles now online
2. From grains of volcanic glass to continental rifting: New Geosphere articles now online
3. Over 12,000 Wiley Online Books made available in developing countries via Research4Life
4. GSA Bulletin starts 2013 with 13 new papers published online ahead of print
5. GEOLOGY starts 2013 with 25 new articles posted online ahead of print
6. New online, open access journal focuses on microbial genome announcements
7. New online tool estimates carbon and energy impact of trees
8. GEOLOGY speeding top science to online platform
9. GEOLOGY adds 30 new articles online
10. Houston Clean Air Network offering real-time online ozone report
11. A charismatic new lacewing from Malaysia discovered online by chance
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:8/26/2018)... ... August 23, 2018 , ... Clinical ... sensitivity and specificity over more commonly used analytical techniques. However, implementation can be ... of development and validation of methods that must be undertaken by the laboratory ...
(Date:8/23/2018)... ... August 21, 2018 , ... CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing ... and species for the robust functional interrogation of complex biological processes. Gene editing ... based immunotherapies, the study of the autoimmunity, the understanding of host-pathogen dynamics that ...
(Date:8/21/2018)... ... August 20, 2018 , ... ... announced that Seattle-based Aptevo Therapeutics , a clinical-stage biotechnology company, has ... Genedata Biologics ® platform to facilitate expansion of their pipeline of ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:8/29/2018)... ... August 28, 2018 , ... Nanovis , an innovative ... completion of a $5.5 million funding round managed by Commenda Securities. Key investors ... and Ellipsis Ventures. , “Our investment in Nanovis is consistent with our mission ...
(Date:8/29/2018)... ... August 28, 2018 , ... CEO and ... a safety study performed on an allogeneic (donor derived) stem cell product for ... (NAVRMA) conference in September. He is also the organizer of Breakout Session ...
(Date:8/26/2018)... ... August 23, 2018 , ... LabRoots , the ... around the world, will host the 4th Annual Microbiology and Immunology Virtual Event ... disciplines, encompassing various research areas including medicine, agriculture, and space. , During ...
(Date:8/23/2018)... , ... August 23, 2018 , ... Visikol ... Co-Founder Dr. Thomas Villani. Through support from advisors, mentors, the Rutgers Technology Transfer team ... , Visikol’s path from an idea to a successful biotech company has been a ...
Breaking Biology Technology: