Support the WoRMS editors | Flanders Marine Institute

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Support the WoRMS editors

WoRMS, the World Register of Marine Species, is the list of all life in the ocean. Currently, more than 200 editors across the world, each with their expertise in a certain taxonomic group, are working on this Register voluntarily. Each year up to 2,000 newly described species are added to the Register.

WoRMS, the World Register of Marine Species aims to capture the names of all species described since the pioneering work of Carl Linnaeus and is continuously updated and improved by a group of taxonomic experts, 'the editors'.

Completing and correcting WoRMS requires an enormous continuing effort and is entirely dependent on the expertise and time of the editors. On top of that, it is a race against time as species are at risk of disappearing due to changing maritime conditions (such as warming, pollution and acidification), before they are discovered.

Our support: coordination and dissemination of funds to the WoRMS editors, for example by assigning WoRMS editors grants with a value of EUR 500

Your gift is used to support the work of the WoRMS editors: including filling gaps in coverage, participation in international workshops and meetings, expanding the content and enhancing the quality of taxonomic databases, engaging personnel for verification of taxonomic information, and purchase of scientific literature.

More information about sponsors and an overview of all WoRMS activities can be found on the WoRMS website.


WoRMS editor grants 2019

During 2019, the VLIZ Philanthropy program was able to issue 5 grants with a value of EUR 500 in order to make the WoRMS database more complete. Together, these 5 grants resulted in about 14,000 edits/additions to WoRMS. No less than 16 editors responded to the call, which was launched June 2019. Out of those candidates, five were selected and got financial support. They added missing information with the focus on original names, original descriptions and information related to the type specimen.

One editor – André C. Morandini – lives in Brazil and works on the Scyphozoa. Within that group, he added new names (483) together with many original descriptions. Yen Nguyen Thi My, located in Vietnam, also delivered a large number of original descriptions for the Nematoda (645). Furthermore, she added more than 2000 habitat flags so users will be able to distinguish between marine and brackish species. Robin Wilson, from Australia, is an editor of some families within the Polychaeta. He added 483 specimen and their locality to WoRMS. Next, he included all names available of three families (Aphroditidae, Iphionidae, and Polynoidae). The last two editors can be found in the United Kingdom. Georgina Valls Domedel took care of the Amphipoda: she fixed 1329 species that did not have a basionym (original name). Moreover, she added about 900 names to the database and completed 806 habitat flags. Sammy De Grave checked the Decapoda thoroughly: he completed the data for more than 5000 species and added 613 original description documents with pdf. In addition, he added 249 basionyms to the database and assigned 861 names to the correct family.
Thanks to the grants, together, they are responsible for about 14,000 edits/additions to the database. This brings us again one step closer to a complete WoRMS database.
We would like to thank the people and the companies who donated to the WoRMS editors, which results in these fruitful grants.