In 2014 Tony Rees, the compiler of the IRMNG (Interim Register of Marine and Nonmarine Genera) database at CSIRO in Australia since 2006, accepted an offer from the Flanders Marine Institute to transfer the database there for future hosting, ongoing content maintenance, and closer links with WoRMS and OBIS (see http://www.marinespecies.org/news.php?p=show&id=3765
The Data Management Team at VLIZ have been working hard with Tony to make this a reality and we are pleased to announce that the transfer is complete and a new version of IRMNG is now officially available, hosted on the VLIZ data management infrastructure. This new version supersedes previous editions hosted at CSIRO in Australia and already contains a further 9,000 genus names added since 2014 plus changes and improvements to hundreds/thousands of individual records. Alongside the utilization of VLIZ-designed web interfaces already in use for WoRMS and other related, Aphia-hosted databases, the new version includes the potential expansion of IRMNG habitat flags (previously just marine/nonmarine, now marine/brackish/freshwater/terrestrial), improved reference management, access to other VLIZ taxonomic name search tools and more.
The hosting of IRMNG at the Flanders Marine Institute has several advantages, including the possibility to create an even stronger link between IRMNG and WoRMS than before. IRMNG and WoRMS can be cross-checked, helping to fill gaps in both and to avoid duplication of efforts. Ultimately, new services will be developed on top of both IRMNG and WoRMS, allowing to better serve the needs of the users of these systems.
As at July 2016 IRMNG presently contains 2,292,709 taxon names (infraspecies to kingdoms) including 1,781,307 species names including synonyms (1,313,662 accepted species including 30,909 accepted fossil-only species) and 484,730 genus names (376,068 accepted) out of perhaps 500,000(+) genus names ever published, living plus fossil, in all groups i.e. animals, plants, protists, fungi, prokaryotes and viruses. For more details and the new IRMNG data search interface please see the new IRMNG web site www.irmng.org
The transfer of IRMNG to VLIZ is supported by LifeWatch, the E-Science European Infrastructure for Biodiversity and Ecosystem Research. LifeWatch is a distributed virtual laboratory which will be used for different aspects of biodiversity research. VLIZ is also responsible for building the LifeWatch Taxonomic Backbone, to which IRMNG will be a valuable contribution.