The All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory

The All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory


Images by Rachel CameronThe idea behind an All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory is quite simple.  If we want to be good stewards of our environment and keep the world around us healthy and vibrant, we need to understand the web of biodiversity.  The information we need - how many species live in an environment, what jobs these species do, how they interact with each other - is mostly unknown.

An ATBI seeks to discover that crucial information.  A brainchild of renowned ecologist Dan Janzen, the first ATBI was supposed to take place in the rainforests of northwest Costa Rica.  Due to bureaucratic difficulties, however, the location was changed to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Although most explanations of an ATBI stress that it is an effort to identify all the species of life in a given area, that is not quite an accurate picture.  An ATBI is more than just a checklist of species names.  It is a complex and living database of species locations, habitats, genetic diversity, population density, symbiotic relationships, and predator-prey interactions.  It is a cooperative effort between expert scientists specializing in all different forms of life.  It is a way to discover new species in need of protection, to identify new threats in time to act, and to understand how to protect a complex and valuable ecosystem like the Smoky Mountains.

Since Discover Life in America and the National Park Service organized this first ATBI, many like it have sprung up all over the United States and the World.  Visit the ATBI Alliance website for links to different projects from Maine to Texas that are carrying on the work that we have started here.

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Thank You for Coming to the 2014 Salamander Ball

Thanks to all who obeyed the call
To "come one come all to the Salamander Ball"!
Click to see Tinah Utsman's fantastic photos from the Ball!

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Thank you for a great 2014 ATBI Conference

Thank you to all who participated in, and attended our annual ATBI Conference of March 2014. We believe it was very profitable: not only for the attendees in general, but for the gathering and collaboration of experts in the field of conservation biology. We were also delighted and enthused by the presence and presentations of our keynote speaker, bat conservationist and author, Dr. Merlin Tuttle.

Thank you Dr. Tuttle!
See Bat Conservation International