What is MammalWeb?

MammalWeb is a web platform for anyone interested in different mammal species living in their local area and further beyond. If you have a camera trap, you can upload and share the photos you have taken of mammals around you. Or you can go online to view the photos that other users have uploaded to MammalWeb and see how many you recognize.

Autor: P Palencia/SaBio-IREC 

Why should I use it?

MammalWeb can help you better understand how different mammal species and their habitats are spread across Europe. You can upload your photos to the web or identify species from your own home.

Help boost the conservation of mammals you love in their natural habitats!

It’s a great opportunity to learn more about nature, swap knowledge with other users, and spend some quality time in nature.

View fantastic photos of wild mammals in their environment—you just might be surprised by the species around you.

What are the benefits of its use?

The knowledge we have of most wild mammals is still pretty limited. Although there are very detailed studies on biology of many species, they tend to focus on very small natural areas. It’s important to widen this very local point of view, so that we can gain more information about specific mammals in their broader environment.

  • With the information we get from users, we can better understand the distribution of mammal species, and their seasonal and temporal movement patterns.
  • With better information about where mammals live and how they move, we can better understand the influence of climate change and human activities on changes in distribution patterns, and the presence of introduced or invasive species. We can also have a better idea of the diseases wild mammals carry that can affect livestock and humans. A good understanding of mammal distribution can help to determine risks and make decisions based on solid scientific evidence.
  • When we collect enough data points through information uploaded by the users, not only can we see which species are present, but we can also have a better sense of which species may be missing in each region. This information is very important in order to understand and accurately predict species distribution and thus population size.

We will be able to verify the information you send us with the help of experts and other members of the scientific community. This validated information will be sent to a centralized archive of the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF) and the European Food and Safety Authority (EFSA), that researchers and wildlife managers around the world can use to answer present and future research and conservation questions.

Why at GBIF?

GBIF—the Global Biodiversity Information Facility—is an international network and research infrastructure funded by the world’s governments and aimed at providing anyone, anywhere, open access to data about all types of life on Earth.

An important part of GBIF’s mission is to promote a culture in which people recognize the benefits of publishing open-access biodiversity data, for themselves as well as for the broader society. 

By making your data discoverable and accessible through GBIF and similar information infrastructures, you will contribute to global knowledge about biodiversity, and thus to the solutions that will promote its conservation and sustainable use.

Data publishing enables datasets held all over the world to be integrated, revealing new opportunities for collaboration among data owners and researchers.

Why at EFSA

European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) is responsible for providing the Commission and the public with independent scientific advice on food safety and risks in the food chain. EFSA will use this information on distribution and abundance of wildlife to improve risk assessments associated with diseases affecting wildlife, livestock and humans.

Here is a screenshot of the MammalWeb ’Trapper’ page, showing an example camera trap location within the ENETWILD Spain project.

How to use it?

Users have to register and may then choose to become trappers and/or spotters. Trappers can then register their camera trap sites, provide information on camera trap type and location, using geographical coordinates. Once a camera trap site is registered, images can be uploaded and spotters can start identifying animals in the images. Only images from this camera model in this location should then be uploaded. Many different locations can be added.

Remember to select the MammalNet project to upload your photos within your country, or if you prefer to be able to identify those photos that have been captured in your country.

Spotters can identify any of the images on MammalWeb, or they can choose to look at images from a specific project or country. Users can see which country the images are from and they are given a list of the local species to choose from. The website is offered in a number of languages for easier use.

Here is a screenshot of the MammalWeb Spotter page. The image is of a grey squirrel sitting on the camera, with its tail hanging down.

Here is a screenshot of the MammalWeb Spotter page, showing a grey squirrel, which has been identified in the image (see bottom left).

Spotters will then view a series of images, in order to identify all the animals seen from the dropdown list. Spotters can note how many of each animal is present and can identify more than one species in a photo series.

The images will remain the property of the person who uploads them, but the data taken from the images will be made openly available through GBIF under a Creative Commons license (Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)). Users will eventually be able to view the records from different areas, by using a discovery tool, which is currently in the beta test stage. Specific camera trap locations are not revealed, but the images are grouped so users can access the database, for example, to look at species diversity or activity patterns. More detailed instructions for using MammalWeb can be found on the website.

More detailed instructions for using MammalWeb can be found on the site

 

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