Online encyclopedia for all animal, plant, species started

This is a video about twin polar bear cubs.

Reuters reports:

From apples to zebras, all 1.8 million known plant and animal species will be listed in an internet-based ‘Encyclopedia of Life’ under a US$100 million ($135 million) project, scientists said today. …

The free Encyclopedia would focus mainly on animals, plants and fungi with microbes to follow, blending text, photographs, maps and videos in a common format for each.

Expansion of the internet in recent years made the multi-media project possible.

Demonstration pages at include entries about polar bears, rice, death cap mushrooms and a “yeti crab” with hairy claws recently found in the South Pacific.

Biology books online, German site: here.

1 thought on “Online encyclopedia for all animal, plant, species started

  1. Online Encyclopedia of Life reaches 150,000 species

    * Posted on – Tue Aug 25, 2009 10:54AM EDT


    The Encyclopedia of Life, an online project launched in 2007 with the aim of creating a webpage on every known animal and plant species, has reached 150,000 entries in its second year.

    In a statement marking the anniversary, the collaborative project said close to two million people from more than 200 countries had contributed to the website (

    Users can create a page that describes a plant or animal with text, images or both. The information is then submitted to experts, verified and made available for free.

    The project’s creators hope to accumulate a page for every 1.8 million animal and plant species known to scientists over 10 years.

    That goal “will provide a powerful tool to assist researchers and policymakers in better understanding biodiversity and discerning patterns of plant and animal behavior,” said Arthur Sussman, vice president of the John and Catherine MacArthur Foundation.

    The foundation, one of the project’s co-sponsors, donated 10 million dollars in 2007 to help launch the undertaking.

    The project’s founders hope the encyclopedia will help develop new strategies to protect endangered species and counteract climate change.

    Some experts say the online resources could even one day help human beings learn how to live longer by isolating which species and subspecies have more extended lifespans and why.

    “By integrating and consolidating information on species, EOL also has the potential to accelerate scientific discovery and serve as an infrastructure for life sciences research,” Sussman said.

    In its second year, 75 percent of the online architecture for the website is complete, with 1.4 million place-holder pages available to be filled with information about Earth’s flora and fauna.

    The encyclopedia also includes DNA bar codes and other genetic sequences on species from various global sources.

    For non-English speakers, project partners have launched versions of the encyclopedia in other languages with information on the plants, animals and micro-organisms of a given country or region.


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