Planet Earth has over 1.8 million species that we know of and millions more that we don’t. Species are becoming extinct before we even discover them.
The Encyclopedia of Life is a gargantuan effort to document all 1.8 million named species of animals, plants, and other forms of life on our planet – all available from a single resource. It will be used as both a teaching and a learning tool, helping scientists, educators, students, and the wider community acquire a better understanding of this planet and all who inhabit it.
While it will take a decade to compile basic data on all 1.8 million known species, it’s been predicted that the Encyclopaedia of Life will be a highly valuable resource in three to five years. Currently, 30,000 species are listed – that’s quite an effort seeing as the project kicked off only last year.
The official launch date was February 26th, but due to an incredible response and subsequent load on their servers, they reverted to the pages displayed prior to launch.
It was pleasing to visit the site this evening and find it up and running, albeit slowly. This will be an phenomenal resource for millions and for many generations to come – I’d definitely recommend adding it to your bookmarks.
Let’s hope that it won’t be the only place to see many species in the years ahead; that all will still be also present in nature.