With the on-going efforts in digitising museum collections, increased participation of citizen scientists, and greater accessibility to research data, accurately determining global patterns of diversity has become more achievable. Here, we used occurrence records from the Global Biodiversity Information Facility, with annotation of authoritative taxonomy, to evaluate the taxonomic richness of marine gastropods and to identify global species hotspots for this group. We also reviewed the availability of genetic resources within hotspots to detect potentially important regions where reference sequences for identifying these organisms are wanting. We find 33,268 unique and valid species under 3291 genera belonging to 380 gastropod families that have been recorded from 1662 to 2023. Globally, only 12.1% of reported species are linked to a COI barcode, whilst 27.1% of the families are represented with complete mitogenomes. Georeferenced records show the wide albeit disparate distribution of observations and species counts. The compiled dataset, published by organisations that are restricted to 55 countries, reveal a seeming lack of local submissions, but nonetheless demonstrates the growing contribution of citizen science platforms. We present 28 marine provinces across the globe as putative gastropod species hotspots and call for further work and stronger involvement, particularly within COI barcoding cold spots, to address the observed genetic reference inequity. Lastly, we highlight the important and relevant role of open and inclusive science to biodiversity monitoring and research.

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Biodiversity and Conservation

Released under the CC-BY 4.0 ("Attribution 4.0 International") License

Staff publications

Torres, Andrew F., Wangensteen, Owen S., Renema, W., Meyer, Christopher P., Fontanilla, Ian Kendrich C., & Todd, Jonathan A. (2024). Global species hotspots and COI barcoding cold spots of marine Gastropoda. Biodiversity and Conservation, 2024. doi:10.1007/s10531-024-02896-9