Biotics 5 provides a common data management platform for members of the NatureServe Network to achieve and maintain a unified taxonomy and consistent application of our shared data standards and methodology. The Biotics 5 database underpins NatureServe map and data products like the National Species Dataset, and NatureServe Explorer at the international scale, and a wide range of products at the state and provincial scale, such as species field guides and checklists, or online applications to support conservation planning and environmental review.
Biotics 5 provides the framework for managing taxonomic and biological data on elements of biodiversity, including plant and animal species and ecological communities, along with supporting information such as references. Biotics 5 is also used to map locations on the ground, known as "element occurrences," current and potential conservation sites, and areas of land under protective management.
Using a software-as-a-service delivery model, Biotics 5 centralizes the data and software hosting in a shared "cloud" environment maintained by NatureServe. This sustainable model ensures ongoing system improvements can meet user demand. System benefits include:
- System-wide cost savings across the NatureServe Network by consolidating more than 50 separate database instances to a centralized hosting facility.
- Better interoperability and data sharing with partner systems through the use of open data and technology standards.
- Near real-time data synchronization among NatureServe Network programs using a web services architecture.
- ArcGIS Server-based mapping platform allows users to overlay Biotics data with map services available on the Internet.
- Multi-lingual interface supports English, French and Spanish speaking users.
- Integrated online Help Desk and user documentation.