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Taxonomy and Classification

BBC News: 'Barcode' to help identify plants
An international team of scientists has agreed on a standard "DNA barcode" for plants that will allow botanists to identify species quickly and easily.
Classification of Living Things
Learn about the Linnaean system of classification used in the biological sciences to describe and categorize all living things, with a focus on finding out how humans fit within this system.
Introduction to the Eukaryota
Comprises detailed information on systematics, life histories, morphologies and fossil record data for all eukaryotes. Well worth a look.
Taxonomy: Classifying Life
Learn how organisms are classified. Includes background information on homology, embryonic development, DNA hybridisation, phylogenetic trees, cladistics, plus more.
Taxonomy Lab: An exercise in taxonomy
An introduction to taxonomy and classification. Includes the Linnaean Hierarchy, type specimens, and a class experiment for you to develop a classification scheme.
The Cockroach Phylogeny
This site contains a suggested Phylogeny of the various cockroach species, and links to many related online resources.
The Phylogeny of Life
An introduction to phylogeny. Learn about the history of life on Earth by tracing life's phylogeny from three different starting points. Work your way through the phylogeny of all organisms, from whales to bacteria.
The New Zealand Mollusca
Provides a checklist for New Zealand molluscs (including location maps and photos).
The Tree of Life Home Page
The Tree of Life is a project containing information about the diversity of organisms on Earth, their history, and characteristics.
Will's Skull Page
Useful photos of skulls as a means of species identification. Contains a key to identify British mammals, as well as other specimens, and has note on preparing material, plus more.


BBC News: Studies 'overstate species risks'
Large-scale computer simulations may be overestimating the impact of climate change often failing to take into account local variations, such as topography and microclimates. One study looked at plant species in the Swiss Alps. Where a 16km by 16km grid cells predicted a loss of all suitable habitats during the 21st Century, and a 25m by 25m grid cells predicted the persistence of suitable habitats for up to 100% of plant species. The current system of having fixed nature reserves may need to be reconsidered Dr Bhagwat explained.
(GBIF) Global Biodiversity Information Facility
GBIF is an international organisation that is working to make the world's biodiversity data accessible everywhere in the world. GBIF and its many partners work to mobilise the data, and to improve search mechanisms, data and metadata standards, web services, and the other components of an Internet-based information infrastructure for biodiversity.
Biodiversity in New Zealand
New Zealand's Department of Conservation provides information here on biodiversity, native species, and threats to biodiversity (weeds and pests).
Environment Australia - Biodiversity
A site describing biodiversity programmes, initiatives and policies at the international, national, community and local levels in Australia.
Convention on Biological Diversity
This site looks at the importance of biological diversity for the health of people and the planet, and explains the role of the CBD in protecting this Biodiversity.
(UK) CWT-Biodiversity Action Plans
The Cheshire Wildlife Trusts runs many projects and biodiversity action plans for species and habitats in the United Kingdom.
International Species Information System
ISIS is an international nonprofit membership organization supporting species conservation and preservation. It has a high level of global cooperation, including almost half the world's recognised zoos and aquaria. May take a while to load.
Species 2000
Species 2000 has the aim of enumerating all known species of plants, animals, fungi and microbes as the baseline dataset for studies of global biodiversity.
The Animal Diversity Web
The Animal Diversity Web is an electronic database with pictures and information on individual animal species, including details of distributions, natural history, conservation, and economic importance.
The New Zealand Biodiversity Strategy
New Zealand's biodiversity strategy looks at the steps involved in preserving the country's flora and fauna.  Also looks at goals for the 21st century and how these goals will be achieved.
What are biodiversity Hotspots?
This website explains what a hotspot is and why these areas should be preserved. Also includes a global map showing which regions contain hotspots.
World Conservation Monitoring Centre
The World Conservation Monitoring Centre provides information services on conservation and sustainable use of the world's living resources, and helps others to develop information systems of their own.