Mobilising Vegetation Plot Data: the National Vegetation Survey Databank. Susan Wiser April 2016

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1 Mobilising Vegetation Plot Data: the National Vegetation Survey Databank Susan Wiser April 2016

2 Nationally Significant Databases and Collections

3 Types of databases & collections Real-time data Geospatial Living organisms Preserved specimens Observations

4 Types of databases & collections Real-time data Geospatial Living organisms Preserved specimens Observations

5 Types of databases & collections Real-time data Geospatial Living organisms Preserved specimens Observations

6 Types of databases & collections Real-time data Geospatial Living organisms Preserved specimens Observations

7 Types of databases & collections Real-time data Geospatial Living organisms Preserved specimens Observations

8 What is the NVS Databank? How are NVS data used? Lessons learned Open Data

9 What types of data are in the NVS databank? Plot location and site conditions Total vascular plant composition Plant abundance (density, cover, frequency) Plant identity & size (diameter, height) Individuals may be permanently marked Other data often associated: leaf chemistry coarse woody debris herbivory soils

10 > relevés > permanent plots

11 NVS is both a physical archive

12 And an electronic one

13

14 History of NVS up to last decade s First national scale plot-based forest surveys 1960s Late 1960s Late 1980s Standardised methods for inventory and monitoring of native vegetation developed Beginning of electronic data capture Process for centrally archiving electronic and hard copy data formalised Nationally Significant database status accorded by FRST NVS moved from outdated platform to relational database 2003 Formal assessment of end-user needs

15 User needs analysis identified four types of end-users: Researchers Biodiversity Managers Policy makers Data networks

16 What is the NVS Databank? How are NVS data used? Lessons learned Open data

17 Regional Scale: describing naturally uncommon gumlands Lower elevation, less rainfall Better drainage Less fertile soils More fire Higher elevation, more rainfall Poor drainage More fertile soils Less fire Clarkson et al Vegetation ecology of gumland heaths in northern New Zealand. New Zealand Journal of Ecology

18 Regional scale: tawa growth rates Smale et al Diameter growth rates of tawa (Beilschmiedia tawa) across the middle North Island, New Zealand implications for sustainable forest management. NZ J Forestry Science

19 Regional scale: Lakes Manapouri and Te Anau shorelines Trithuria inconspicua Dennis Gordon Gratiola concinna Colin Ogle

20 National Scale: Predicting climate change impacts

21 National scale: Impacts of exotic browsing mammals

22 National scale: Impacts of exotic browsing mammals Long-term exclosure plots LUCAS Natural Forest Inventory

23 Stem Frequency National scale: Impacts of exotic browsing mammals LUCAS = black Exclosures = blue Controls = red Melicytus ramiflorus Stem Size Classes Peltzer, Duane A., et al. "Disentangling drivers of tree population size distributions." Forest Ecology and Management 331 (2014):

24 National scale: Vegetation classification

25 National scale: Vegetation classification Rare types defined: lowland Mataῑ forest

26 National scale: State of Environment Reporting

27 Uses of NVS: Global scale

28 What is the NVS Databank? How are NVS data used? Lessons learned Open data

29 Lesson 1: Use standards Geographic Organism names

30 Geographic standards allow ready integration with spatial layers to show species distributions

31 ...and to retrieve covariates from spatial layers

32 Ability to update taxonomic names

33 Use of NZ standard for taxonomic names allows integration with trait data

34 Lesson 2: Build on existing efforts

35 Lesson 3: Modular development with demonstrable achievements Data migrated to interim relational database Website launched User needs assessment Paper records moved to purpose-built archive facility Data available through GBIF Electronic data migrated into new system providing robust data organisation and storage NVS Express training workshops held NVS Express data analysis package released Paper about NVS in NZ J Ecol Link to NZ Plant Names Database Plots and species can be mapped on website NVS Express data entry tool released NVS funded through infrastructure backbone program NVS listed in GIVD

36 Lesson 4: close collaboration between scientists and informatics specialists Plant ecologists Database management data entry Database design, integration, programming, website

37 Lesson 5: Strong service ethic

38 What is the NVS Databank? How are NVS data used? Lessons learned Open data

39 NZ Goal Audit needs Scientific journals Data creator Personal privacy Landowners NVS Tracking Data use

40 Meeting audit requirements: the problem of a living database Year Tree tag Taxon DBH 2000 C8615 Melicytus ramiflorus 13.5 Year Tree tag Taxon DBH 2006 C8615 Brachyglottis repanda 4.6

41 Meeting audit requirements: the problem of a living database Year Tree tag Taxon DBH 2000 C8615 Melicytus ramiflorus 13.5 Year Tree tag Taxon DBH 2006 C8615 Brachyglottis repanda Data downloaded at different times will be different!

42 Our solution: archiving the data package

43 Meeting Open Data requirements: Data sets may require permission from owners to access Open Conditional 50:50

44 Meeting Open Data requirements: satisfying NVS need to report use

45 Meeting Open Data requirements: NVS solution datastore.landcareresearch.co.nz

46

47

48 Exciting science Evidence-base for reporting and management Integration with other national databases and collections Long-term ecosystem dynamics

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