Scientists from Australia and around the world visit the collection to work with this comprehensive record.
Australian biological collections
CSIRO is the custodian of a number of collections of animal and plant specimens that contribute to national and international biological knowledge.
10 July 2007 | Updated 15 October 2012
The Australian Biological Collections contribute to the discovery, inventory, understanding and conservation of Australia’s plant and animal biodiversity.
The collections include the:
Together, they constitute a vast storehouse of information about Australia’s biodiversity. They underpin a significant part of the country’s taxonomic, genetic, agricultural and ecological research.
They are, therefore, vital resources for conservation and the development of sustainable land and marine management systems. Good science and sound decisions on biodiversity and natural resource management require correct identification of Australia’s native species.
Australian biological collections underpin a significant part of the country’s taxonomic, genetic, agricultural and ecological research.
During 2006-07, there have been many highlights for the collections, including the launch of the Atlas of Living Australia, a web-based encyclopaedia of Australia’s biodiversity knowledge. This national initiative will include data from more than 60 biological collections from Australia and will be worth more than US$34 million over five years.
The ANWC participated in a three year Environmental Trust's 'Better Knowledge Better Bush' - Gene Flow in Revegetated Landscapes Subproject. This collaborative project, which links CSIRO with natural resource organisations, assists planners in New South Wales to understand the factors that influence biodiversity in revegetated landscapes and will lead to better conservation management.
The ANFC continues to grow with an estimated 135 000 specimens. Its primary role is as a biodiversity reference and research tool, rather than a public display.
Scientists from Australia and around the world visit the collection to work with this comprehensive record of Australia's highly unique marine life.
The ANH released the interactive identification keys EUCLID 3rd Edition covering all Australian eucalypts and Australian Orchid Genera. This user-friendly format makes information about plants readily available to researchers, the general public and special interest groups.
The Herbarium data has provided, for the first time, clear mapping of biotic regions in the Murray River Floodplain in Victoria. This information has assisted in our understanding of the response of species to changing water regimes in parts of the Murray Darling Basin.
The ANFC published a 330-page field guide, Economically Important Sharks and Rays of Indonesia, which is the first comprehensive survey of Indonesia's sharks and rays since the 1850s. The field guide is based on the findings of a five-year survey of catches at local fish markets in Indonesia.
It provides the first detailed description of Indonesia’s shark and ray fauna - information critical to their management in Indonesia and Australia. It covers more than 130 species, including 20 that are new to science. Specimens of most of the species are lodged in the ANFC.
Read more about The Australian biological collections.