Sorting plants on expedition in Coppename, Suriname.
CI has long been at the forefront of the discovery of species new to science.
Since 1990, scientists working with (RAP) teams, Center for Applied Biodiversity Science (CABS), and CI field programs have been surveying and documenting species all over the globe.
They have discovered over 700 species that are potentially new to science – a number that grows nearly every day. CI collaborates with a large network of highly-respected scientists from universities, natural history museums, NGOs, governments and other institutions around the world. These scientists are experts in finding and identifying species of their specific taxonomic group, such as plants, insects, birds, mammals, reptiles or amphibians. Some of the academic partners RAP has collaborated closely with include:
Louisiana State University
Julius Maximilian University of Würzburg
Anton de Kom Universiteit van Suriname
South Australian Museum
Papua New Guinea Department of Environment and Conservation
Florida International University
The Field Museum
Fundación La Salle de Ciencias Naturales
Instituto Venezolano de Investigaciones Científicas
Fundación Jardín Botánico del Orinoco
Colección Ornitológica Phelps
Unfortunately, fewer people are entering the field of taxonomy and already there are few or no expert scientists for many taxonomic groups. This lack of new recruits and expertise in taxonomy is already a bottleneck in the discovery and naming of the world’s species. To combat this loss, CI helps ensure that scientists, especially in developing countries, are trained in rapid assessment methods and connected to expert taxonomists in their fields.
If you are engaged in biodiversity surveys of any kind, please join CI’s Biodiversity Survey Network to share information, methods, and tips with fellow scientists, as well to find students interested in finding a mentor.