A database on the distribution of butterflies (Lepidoptera) in northern Belgium (Flanders and the Brussels Capital Region)

Dirk Maes, Wouter Vanreusel, Marc Herremans, Pieter Vantieghem, Dimitri Brosens, Karin Gielen, Olivier Beck, Hans Van Dyck, Peter Desmet

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    Abstract

    In this data paper, we describe two datasets derived from two sources, which collectively represent the most complete overview of butterflies in Flanders and the Brussels Capital Region (northern Belgium). The first dataset (further referred to as the INBO dataset – http://doi.org/10.15468/njgbmh) contains 761,660 records of 70 species and is compiled by the Research Institute for Nature and Forest (INBO) in cooperation with the Butterfly working group of Natuurpunt (Vlinderwerkgroep). It is derived from the database Vlinderdatabank at the INBO, which consists of (historical) collection and literature data (1830-2001), for which all butterfly specimens in institutional and available personal collections were digitized and all entomological and other relevant publications were checked for butterfly distribution data. It also contains observations and monitoring data for the period 1991-2014. The latter type were collected by a (small) butterfly monitoring network where butterflies were recorded using a standardized protocol. The second dataset (further referred to as the Natuurpunt dataset – http://doi.org/10.15468/ezfbee) contains 612,934 records of 63 species and is derived from the database http://waarnemingen.be, hosted at the nature conservation NGO Natuurpunt in collaboration with Stichting Natuurinformatie. This dataset contains butterfly observations by volunteers (citizen scientists), mainly since 2008. Together, these datasets currently contain a total of 1,374,594 records, which are georeferenced using the centroid of their respective 5 × 5 km² Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) grid cell. Both datasets are published as open data and are available through the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF).
    Original languageEnglish
    JournalZooKeys
    Volume585
    Pages (from-to)143-156
    Number of pages14
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2016

    Thematic list

    • Insects

    EWI Biomedical sciences

    • B320-zoogeography

    Taxonomic list

    • butterflies (Lepidoptera)

    Policy

    • biodiversity policy

    Geographic list

    • Flanders

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