The taxon experts group in many ways represents the backbone of much of the work that goes on in the Jetz Lab and Map of Life, defining what species are to be considered a part of each taxon through to how their associated data is treated and cleaned for ingestion by Map of Life.
Any data coming into Map of Life must go through several steps. First, it must be assigned to a species. Each taxon expert is responsible for selecting a taxonomic authority and generating one if an aggregated one doesn’t exist. An important component is then developing tools to harmonize data collected using other authorities so that they match our taxonomy, as well as providing the flexibility to update the taxonomies as new species are discovered and taxonomies refined.
This data is then cleaned to remove erroneous records, and we are developing methods to do that in a transparent, homogenized, and reproducible way. For example, data may come with spelling mistakes, the wrong coordinates, or be out of date. We harmonize these data for our research and analyses as well as to facilitate downstream analyses, with the movement ecology group to the conservation analytics group and beyond.
Charlie Marsh, Emily Sandall, Aurore Maureaud, Doug Booher, Bort Edwards, Yanina Sica, Stefan Pinkert, Maisha Lucas, Kate Ingenloff
Matt Rogan, Richard Li, Mario Ribeiro de Moura, Vijay Barve, John Wieczorek
Projects and point of contact:
Generating master lists, country-checklists and collecting synonyms:
- Ants (Doug)
- Plants (Bort)
- Crabs and marine realm (Aurore)
- Butterflies (Stefan)
- Dragonflies and damselflies (Emily)
- Reptiles (Mario + Yani)
- Mammals (Charlie + Yani)
- Birds (Kate + Yani)
- Marine lobsters (Maisha + Aurore)
Cleaning of occurrence data
Taxonomic harmonisation, identification of taxonomic, orthographic and spatial errors:
- Taxonomic cleaning working group (Emily)
- Spatial cleaning working group (Stefan)
- Overall workflow - Charlie (lead), Yani, Stefan, Bort, Matt
Taxonomy in biodiversity and macroecological synthesis (perspective)
- Emily and Aurore (leads), Charlie, Yani, Maisha, Kate, Stefan, Doug, Bort, Walter (+ external collaborators)
Knowledge gaps in biodiversity data
Marine biogeography and regions of the ocean seafloor
Aurore + Kate (+ external persons not in the taxon expert group)
Data shortfalls in bats
Global synthesis of marine decapods: species ranges and macroecology
Coverage metrics for invertebrate and plant data
Ruth (lead), Doug, Bort, Emily, Stefan
Integrative proxies for the distribution of data-poor species and regions
Functional-phylogenetic diversity in European and African freshwater systems
Stefan (+ external collaborators). LINK: gepris.dfg.de/gepris/projekt/409487552
Environmental drivers of the functional diversity of the butterflies of the world
Stefan (Feodor-Lynen Fellowship - Alexander von Humboldt Foundation)
The role of functional dietary role in mediating latitudinal gradient of size in ants
Doug (+ external collaborators)
Sandall*, E.L., Maureaud*, A. A. (…) (2021)Taxonomy: the foundation of biodiversity synthesis and conservation (in prep)
Booher, D. and D. Uhey (2020). “New Native Trap-jaw Ant, Strumigenys Smith, from the Neotropical excise Species Group Discovered in a Disjunct Region and Climate on the Colorado Plateau.” Southwestern Entomologist 45(3): 663-671.
Booher, D. B. and P. O. Hoenle (2021). “A new species group of Strumigenys (Hymenoptera, Formicidae) from Ecuador, with a description of its mandible morphology.” ZooKeys 1036.
Pinkert, S., Zeuss, D., Dijkstra, K.B., Kipping, J., Clausnitzer, V., Brunzel, S. & Brandl, R. (2020) Climate–diversity relationships underlying cross‐taxon diversity of the African fauna and their implications for conservation. Diversity and Distributions, 26:1330–1342. LINK: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/epdf/10.1111/ddi.13134.