The Society for the study of flies (Diptera)

Affiliated to the British Entomological and Natural History Society (BENHS)

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#1 2008-04-23 19:39:54

Name: Darwyn Sumner
Registered: 2008-02-20
Posts: 394

Diptera on the NBN Gateway

This topic has been the subject of a few articles in the Bulletin over the past few years but I think it useful to outline the system for the benefit of members who either wish to find or submit records there.
Firstly, it is probably useful to think of it as a huge data warehouse. The designers themselves use this term and are unashamed (or should be) regarding, shall we say, "flashy, user-friendly presentation". By developing and incorporating a large bundle of technical tools to help developers access the data they have allowed others to make these kind of things, customising displays to meet their own requirements. Stuart Ball has used these very tools to make maps available on this website and using some very straightforward tips from Stuart, I have used these tools too. Many would be surprised at just how simple it was for me to do this.

The data present on the NBN Gateway didn't get there all at once by some corporate initiative. It occupied (and continues to occupy) the labours of the National Biodiversity Trust who have tirelessly wheedled, persuaded and engaged all sorts of organisations to contribute records. For some of these organisations, little persuasion has been needed as the aims are the same (e.g. National Federation for Biological Recording, Biological Records Centre at CEH and many National Recording Schemes), some of these organisations have needed a little persuading (e.g. Local Records Centres) and/or required financial support or have been slower than ideally they would have liked due to political changes which have preoccupied them.

The Diptera records on the NBN Gateway fall into all of these classes. The Hoverfly and Field Week records that Stuart and I put there required no persuading - we did it because we could. The Cranefly data required (and requires) some assistance.

It is not the paid responsibility of any organisation to submit records to the NBN Gateway but if some group wishes to do so then assistance may be found (as with Local Records Centres through Natural England or National Recording Schemes through the NBN).

Which puts the responsibility for submitting Diptera records into the hands of the Recording Schemes. If the schemes want any assistance in doing so then please contact us; we are fortunate in having people with the necessary expertise.

Darwyn Sumner
DF Bulletin Editor, Scheme Organiser: Stilt & Stalk Flies



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