Presenting the National Biodiversity Network

The Sussex Biodiversity Record Centre (SxBRC) is proud to announce that it has exported just under 60,000 Sussex Dragonfly records to the National Biodiversity Network (NBN) Gateway. This is the first dataset to be sent to the NBN Gateway from the SxBRC due to this being a good clean dataset, verified by John Luck, the County Dragonfly Recorder. It is a huge milestone for the group.

The National Biodiversity Network (NBN) describes the Gateway as “an innovative website which acts as a “data warehouse” for biodiversity information, which can be quickly and easily accessed to understand the distribution of particular species in the UK. Individual records, can be displayed on a map of the UK in a number of different ways.”

The British Dragonfly Society - Sussex Group and the SxBRC have decided that the Sussex Dragonfly data will only be shown at a 1km resolution and that full details of the records will only be available on request; so the user will only be able to see a map of what data is available for Sussex and then they know that they can come to us for more information. This way we are not compromising the integrity of the dataset, information on any rare or protected species or losing track of who has used the data. By adding this data we will be adding a missing part of the jigsaw on a national level, so that population trends and distributions can be seen much clearer throughout the UK.

If you would like to see the Sussex Dragonfly dataset then visit the NBN Website and click on the “NBN Gateway” tab. It’s worth a visit; you can search for individual species, search through the datasets that are available or even pull up all records for a particular site. Simply type in the species you would like to see a map for, e.g. Emperor Dragonfly, and when it comes up with the results click on ‘Grid map of the distribution of Anax imperator’ and you can then pick the location and play around with the changeable settings. You can also use the ‘Interactive map’ for which there is a link near the top of the page, so you can view where the data has come from, zoom in, and see the data against different boundaries including SSSIs and other designated sites. This is an excellent tool for highlighting gaps in our data, perhaps this Dragonfly season you could explore new or under-recorded areas?

Happy hunting!

Penny Green


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