MetaZooGene (Zooplankton) Barcoding Atlas

The "MZG Barcoding Atlas" is collaboratively-developed product of MetaZoogene (SCOR WG157) and the Coastal & Oceanic Plankton Ecology, Production, & Observation Database (COPEPOD), specifically operating within its "COPEPEDIA" sub-project.  COPEPEDIA is taxonomically arranged database of zooplankton observation, biometric trait, photographs, and now molecular data.  Through its parent and sibling taxonomic tree structure and inter-relationships, information is stored and compiled at multiple taxonomic aggregations.  For example, a user can access data from an individual species (e.g., Calanus finmarchicus) or just as easily get all the combined data from an entire Genus or Family or taxonomic group (e.g. all members the genus Calanus or family Calanidae or even "all copepoda").  

 

Map of North Atlantic copepoda and barcodes Map of Antarctic Euphausiacea and bardcodes Map of South Atlantic chaetognatha and barcodes

 

The creation method of the MZG Atlas can be summarized as follows:

STEP #1:  The biogeographic distribution of each zooplankton species is individually determined by looking at in situ observation data for that species present in the COPEPOD and OBIS databases.  If a minimum number of observations are found within a given ocean, that species is marked as being present in that ocean.  This ocean presence is then passed up to all of the parent levels (e.g., Genera, Family, etc).  Through this hierarchy of membership, simple biogeraphic taxa lists and interfaces can be quickly created (e.g. "Euphausiids of the North Pacific",  "Amphipods of the Baltic Sea").

STEP #2:  The MZG Atlas is tied into the species barcodes records found in the MetaZooGene Reference Database.  This means the existence (or absence) of barcodes can be determine for every species.  It is also possible to summarize group-level coverage (e.g., 70% of the species in this Family have barcodes and 30% do not).

 

The MZG Atlas Interface allows the user to navigate across taxonomic groups and oceans of their interest.