Biodiversity & DNA barcoding
What is DNA barcoding? Why it is important? How are data generated?
BOLD already contains data on Austrian organisms. Nonetheless, the majority of the ca. 70,000 species living in Austria are not yet registered. The goal of ABOL is to compile the DNA barcode sequences of all animal, plant and fungus species in Austria, including a consideration of their geographic variation. This information is to be made freely available in an online databank. Moreover, ABOL envisions itself as a platform designed to help Austrian biodiversity research to establish networks and make rapid progress.
Can’t we simply use the data for widely distributed organisms already recorded in Germany, Switzerland and other countries? Only to a very limited extent. This is because Austria is a special hotspot of biodiversity with many exclusive (endemic) species and subspecies. Protecting this wealth calls for an in-depth survey.
Country-wide DNA barcoding projects such as ABOL provide up-to-date information for all animal, plant and fungus species, enabling the documentation of biodiversity. For more widely ranging species, the ABOL data compiled for Austria dovetail into a transnational network that also incorporates geographic variation. This helps highlight the intra-specific genetic diversity across wider regions. From a practical perspective, we can now pinpoint the exact origin of a particular organism.
The 3rd ABOL BioBlitz we were able to perform during the Day of Biodiversity in the Biosphere reserve Wienerwald in Pressbaum. On Friday all day and on Saturday morning, about 80 experts examined the area around the municipality Pressbaum. The rather large area has been divided into 33 locations, well marked on detailed maps. Insects […]
Last weekend the second ABOL BioBlitz took place. This time we were guests at the Day of Biodiversity at the Mühlbergerhof in Grein, Upper Austria. Organized by the Naturschutzbund OÖ and the Biology Center Linz of the Upper Austrian Landesmuseum, about 25 experts examined the biodiversity in the vicinity of the organic farm. Birds were […]