GBIF grows: One billion individual records of species occurrence are now available digitally in the international data network, as the largest global network for biodiversity data, passed the 1 billion mark of digital evidence on species distribution on 04 July 2018. This milestone symbolizes the great collective achievement of the Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF), an initiative established in response to an OECD recommendation in 1999 and currently supported by governments from 123 countries, with 1,200 public and private organizations.

Through GBIF’s global footprint and scientific infrastructure, anyone, anywhere in the world, at any time, has free and unlimited access to information on the occurrence of a broad range of animal, plant, and fungal species at a wide variety of times. Trustworthy and quality-assured data are the foundation for empirical science in the age of Big Data, and GBIF has become a globally recognized data source for scientists as well as the public and policymakers, whose well-documented data are used for a wide variety of types of analyses.

The Bavarian Natural History Collections (SNSB,, one of 39 German data publishers, is currently (as of September 2018) contributing nearly 6.5 million datasets to the German contribution – making it one of the largest data providers to GBIF in Germany. The SNSB provides quality-checked individual data on collection objects and individual observations from monitoring projects, e.g. Flora of Bavaria (

The majority (6 million out of 6.5 million) of SNSB data are delivered with geo-coordinates. “This makes the data particularly valuable for global biodiversity research because their precise geographic assignment makes them ideal for use,” says Dr. Dagmar Triebel, head of the SNSB IT Center and responsible for GBIF services. Among the data published by the SNSB are data packages from the Bavarian State Collection of Paleontology and Geology, the Bavarian State Collection for Botany, the Jura Museum Eichstätt, the State Collection of Anthropology and Paleoanatomy, and the Bavarian State Collection for Zoology.

In order to be able to categorize the GBIF data holdings according to the ideas of various taxonomists and experts for individual species groups, regionalized taxonomic lists, curated by specialists in particular regions, are helpful. The SNSB supports GBIF by publishing such checklists and red lists. Currently, they provide about 30 checklists for different animal and plant groups in Germany, besides the taxonomic classification and the German name of the species, also information on the Red List status and endangerment status of individual species in Germany are provided.

Further information

Dr. Dagmar Triebel
Botanische Staatssammlung München und SNSB IT Center
Menzinger Straße 67
80638 München
Tel.: 089-17861-252