Wildlife Experts Celebrated by the National Biodiversity Data Centre

Dr Tina Aughney and Dr Roy Anderson have been recognised for their work on biodiversity resources by the National Biodiversity Data Centre (NBDC). The two have been presented with the Centre’s 2011 Distinguished Recorder Award. With Dr Anderson documenting 320 new animal and plant species to Ireland and Dr Aughney training over 1,000 people in bat surveying, their contribution to understanding Ireland’s wildlife is immense.

Bats and beetles are not usually the focus of awards in modern Ireland, but the National Biodiversity Data Centre (NBDC) is bucking the trend. Today Drs. Tina Aughney and Roy Anderson will be awarded the Centre’s 2011 Distinguished Recorder Award at a reception in Dublin. With Dr Anderson documenting 320 new animal and plant species to Ireland and Dr Aughney training over 1,000 people in bat surveying, their contribution to understanding Ireland’s wildlife is immense.

Acknowledging their outstanding contribution chair of the NBDC Dr Mary Kelly-Quinn says: “Ireland’s biodiversity is an important national asset, contributing Eur2.6 billion to the Irish economy each year. This asset provides us with clean water, productive soils, fresh air, pollination and pest control. Drs Tina Aughney and Roy Anderson have both committed thousands of hours both professionally and voluntarily towards the conservation and better understanding of this biodiversity resource. They are both leading authorities (nationally and internationally) in their chosen areas. Dr Tina Aughney has amassed a significant and high quality dataset on Irish bats while Dr. Roy Anderson’s area of expertise is on creepy crawlies and fungi.”

Ireland has a rich history of biological recording. Dr. Tina Aughney and Dr. Roy Anderson are continuing the legacy of famous Irish naturalists like Robert Lloyd Praeger in bettering our knowledge of our natural environment. This is the third year of the award with previous awards going to Ken Bond in 2008 for his work recording Lepidoptera (butterflies and moths) and Paul Green in 2009 for his work in improving our knowledge of the Irish flora.

The National Biodiversity Data Centre (NBDC) is dedicated to the collation, management, analysis and dissemination of data and information on Ireland’s biological diversity. One of the Centre’s priorities is to promote and encourage biological recording in Ireland. In its simplest form a biological record tells us where a species occurs and the date on which it was observed. There are currently over 6,000 recorders in Ireland who have contributed records to the Centre either directly or through various recording schemes/organisations.

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