OBIS is beginning October with a diverse data load thanks to the sustained contributions of its partners. The 200,000 record update spans an impressive taxonomic and geographic scope and is composed of submissions from OBIS-USA, SCAR-MarBIN, OBIS Canada, OBIS Brazil and OBIS Japan. OBIS Brazil has provided a wealth of new records including a dataset detailing the distribution of benthic algal flora in the estuarine region of the Lago dos Patos Lagoon as well as an inventory of Cnidaria from Sao Paulo State University. Also provided are numerous updates to datasets spanning the Western South Atlantic mangrove ecosystems of Brazil. OBIS Canada has contributed a variety of new resources including data from a DFO monitoring program aimed at assessing the ecological health of estuaries in the Gulf of St. Lawrence as well as a dataset cataloging the abundance and distribution of 54 species of fish eggs and larvae collected during the 1960s and 70s in the same area. Moving forward, OBIS has begun an exciting collaboration with the Ocean Genome Legacy. This non-profit, marine research organization has shared a repository that contains tissue and DNA extracted from over 12,000 individuals and 2,500 marine taxa and will add a new dimension of specificity to OBIS. Additionally, the U.S. non-profit based out of Oregon, ECOCEAN, has supplied a large update from their extensive Whale-Shark Photo-identification library. Finally, OBIS-Japan has provided its second official submission of biological samples collected via JAMSTEC ships and submersibles. These data include detailed information on sex, life-stage, and abundance and dramatically increase OBIS’ west Pacific resolution. With the October update complete, the OBIS database now houses a total of 1004 datasets, 31.96 million records, and over 158,439 taxa.
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OBIS strives to document the ocean's diversity, distribution and abundance of life. Created by the Census of Marine Life, OBIS is now part of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO, under its International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE) programme.