Biodiversity WG Lead: Lenaick Menot, IFREMER, France. Email: email@example.com
Biogeography WG Lead: Tim O'Hara, Museum Victoria, Australia. Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Please contact Lenaick and Tim if you wish to be an ACTIVE participant of this INDEEP WG.
MAIN ACTIVITIES AND RESULTS
Identification, calibration and analysis of the distribution of abyssal morphospecies from images and videos. This workshop, led by Lenaick Menot, Gordon Paterson and Pedro Martinez on the is currently in the planning stages and the proposed for late 2013. This workshop will be in conjunction with the ISA and a funding application has been made.
The aims of the workshop are to foster taxonomic standardisation among contractors of exploration mining claims and study the distribution of megafaunal species in nodules areas. The workshop aims to devise: a) A standardised nomenclature for the identification of megafaunal species, supported by representative images and key morphological characters, b) A database of georeferenced occurences of species to support the analysis of species distribution and species turnover across the nodule zones.
Expected outputs are 1) a taxonomic atlas of species – both hard copy and an online system, 2) standardised reporting procedures on megafauna (for ISA), 3) links to the new INDEEP image webpages.
Biogeography project (COSMOS Prize)
Tim O'Hara was awarded a COSMOS Prize for a project to map biogeographic assemblages for two major taxonomic groups: ophiuroids and galatheids.
The project is organised around 3 tasks:
1) Synthesising available datasets (museums, literature, other databases).
2) Filling geographic gaps. This requires an intensive period of museum visits and cataloguing of priority collections.
3) Biogeographic analysis. At least 2 methods will be used a) modelling species distributions using the software MaxEnt (Phillips et al. 2006) and then mapping the results of multivariate statistical analyses (as in O’Hara et al. 2011), and b) identifying groups of species with similar environmental profiles and modelling their distribution (Dunstan et al. 2011).
Results: Tasks 1 & 2 have proceeded concurrently. For the ophiuroids, several visits by taxonomists were sponsored, resulting in the integration of museum databases/collections from Stockholm, Copenhagen, British Antarctic Survey, Southampton, Moscow, St Petersburg, Scripps (San Diego), Florida, Mexico City, Buenos Aires, and Cape Town. Additional expeditions were identified from the Paris museum from the eastern Indian Ocean, Papua New Guinea and off Taiwan. This is in addition to records obtained before the start of the project (all Australian and New Zealand collections, Washington, London, Paris, Canada, Calcutta and many literature records). Remaining datasets to be integrated include records from the Tokyo museum, literature from Brazil, and additional datasets from Antarctica and the Arctic. The dataset will be closed for validation at the end of April 2013. It is anticipated that the dataset will include ~100,000 records. For Galatheids, we have sponsored visits by taxonomists to Scripps, Washington, Californian Academy of Science, Los Angeles County Museum, Field Museum, Moscow, Frankfurt, Paris, Wellington, San Paulo and Rio de Janeiro. We have also integrated datasets from Australian and New Zealand museums, Paris, Jamstec, London, Southampton, Barcelona, Cape Town and Singapore. The visits to Moscow and Wellington will occur in April, others are complete. Major literature to be digitised include records from Copenhagen and around South America. The dataset will be closed for validation in mid June 2013. It is anticipated that the dataset will include ~25,000 records. The records will require validation, including a visual inspection of maps of each species to identify records with erroneous data and outliers. These records will be checked by examining the museum specimen (if possible) and/or rejected from the datasets to be analysed.
Several pilot analyses have been conducted for task 3 to date. The analyses will be completed by Sept. 2013 and will be prepared for publication.
Biogeography Session at 13th DSBS, Wellington
This session of the 13th DSBS included special plenary lectures on the history and oceanography of the oceans as well as several lectures by attendees of the first workshop on mapping the ocean held in Aberdeen in September 2011.
Workshop: Mapping The Oceans - How do we do it?
This workshop was held in Wellington (NZ) in conjunction with the 13th DSBS. It gahtered biodiversity scientists, modellers and statisticians that summarised and evaluated the performance and applicability of existing quantitative methods for deep-sea biogeographical research. The results are being prepared in a scientific review publication.