About the Victorian Biodiversity Atlas

The Victorian Biodiversity Atlas (VBA) is a tool for everyone interested in species information across Victoria. Government agencies, environmental consultants, researchers and the public can update and use the information in the atlas to understand what animals and plants we have in the state and where live.

Contributing your observations to VBA is one of the main ways you can influence and help us refine our tools such as habitat distribution models and conservation regulation and investment programs.

VBA is primarily an tool for sharing your observations and survey effort. If you which to search and generate reports on Victorian biodiversity and species information please use the NatureKit tool and we have just launched CoastKit to bring together a wealth of marine and coastal data.

To add your species observations to the VBA you first need to register and await your account activation email (may take up to 3 days).

The basic information needed to form a record is who identified the species, when this was (start date), where it was (either pinpoint on the map or upload GPS coordinates), how you observed the species e.g. incidental or during a targeted survey, and finally which species you observed. Watch the video tutorials and download the VBA user guides that give you step by step instructions.

Contribute -  Create a project (PDF, 334.7 KB)

Contribute -  Create a project (accessible version) (DOCX, 563.7 KB)

Contribute – Add a survey and species records to a project (PDF, 758.4 KB)

Contribute – Add a survey and species records to a project (accessible version) (DOCX, 1004.8 KB)

Currently you can upload your records directly into the VBA online tool or batch upload multiple records using our spreadsheet templates. Contact us to get the latest version of these templates at vba.help@delwp.vic.gov.au

The data in the VBA comes from many different sources. Sometimes this will be the first time that you as a contributing user will see and query all your previous records. This is a great opportunity to check all your information.

Most common errors occur due to transcription mistakes resulting in the wrong location or species ID being used. Other errors occur with different common names, units of measurement, coordinate types or differing sets of assumptions between the contributors and data enterers.

If you find an error within your own data, you can edit it directly in the VBA by following the quick guides below

Contribute – Edit site details (PDF, 544.0 KB)

Contribute – Edit site details (accessible version) (DOCX, 785.4 KB)

Contribute – Edit species records (PDF, 780.3 KB)

Contribute – Edit species records (accessible version) (DOCX, 1.9 MB)

If you believe there is missing data or other errors that do not relate to your records, please email vba.help@delwp.vic.gov.au and quote the Survey ID (or General Observation ID), Taxon ID and a description of the error.

Contribute – Create a project (PDF, 334.7 KB)

Contribute – Create a project (accessible version) (DOCX, 563.7 KB)

Contribute – Add a survey and species records to a project (PDF, 758.4 KB)

Contribute – Add a survey and species records to a project (accessible version) (DOCX, 1004.8 KB)

Contribute – Edit site details (PDF, 544.0 KB)

Contribute – Edit site details (accessible version) (DOCX, 785.4 KB)

Contribute – Edit species records (PDF, 780.3 KB)

Contribute – Edit species records (accessible version) (DOCX, 1.9 MB)

Contribute – Add a breeding record (PDF, 488.9 KB)

Contribute – Add a breeding record (accessible version) (DOCX, 1.1 MB)

Contribute – Add a specimen record (PDF, 382.6 KB)

Contribute – Add a specimen record (accessible version) (DOCX, 431.7 KB)

Contribute – Add count qualifiers (PDF, 275.6 KB)

Contribute – Add count qualifiers (accessible version) (DOCX, 125.7 KB)

Contribute – Upload a shapefile (PDF, 703.1 KB)

Contribute – Upload a shapefile (accessible version) (DOCX, 1.6 MB)

Naming protocols (PDF, 204.4 KB)

Search – Species distribution map (PDF, 426.5 KB)

Search – Species distribution map (accessible version) (DOCX, 799.9 KB)

Search – Summary species list for an area  (PDF, 395.0 KB)

Search – Summary species list for an area (accessible version) (DOCX, 470.7 KB)

Search – Detailed statewide records for single species (PDF, 380.7 KB)

Search – Detailed statewide records for single species (accessible version) (DOCX, 434.7 KB)

Search – Detailed species list for an area (PDF, 385.6 KB)

Search – Detailed species list for an area (accessible version) (DOCX, 734.9 KB)

Search – MyMap personalisation (PDF, 415.2 KB)

Search – MyMap personalisation (accessible version) (DOCX, 1007.8 KB)

Species Identification

When you contribute a record we assume you have a good level of confidence in your identification. If you are not certain you can add the record either at a higher taxonomic level, or use VBA Go that has an Explore function to show what has previously been recorded in your area, plus links to images and habitat descriptions, that may help determine to the most likely species.

For those that are starting out, there are great citizen science recording tools such as Birdlife Australia's Birdata, eBird, iNaturalist and the Royal Botanic Gardens Victoria Herbarium service. All these services share data with the VBA so you can record your observation in anyone and know that the data will count.

In addition, there are some very detailed identification websites for specific groups, such as the invertebrate guide What bug is that? and Birdlife Australia's Birds in backyards.

To maintain data quality all records are reviewed by species specialists before publication in the VBA.

Page last updated: 06/05/21