Skip to content

National Herbarium of NSW on Amazon Web Services

High resolution images of the preserved plant specimens from the National Herbarium of New South Wales are for use via Amazon S3 under Creative Commons By Attribution licence (CC-BY). 

Biocollections metadata associated with each of the collection items is provided as open data and available as CC-0. Images were largely captured using a PhaseOne scanback at 100MP resolution and are available as JPG2000 and jpg format.

Packet and flat sheet specimens held by the National Herbarium of New South Wales will be imaged and successively made available. The imaging and transcription of the collection will be completed by the end of 2021 with the full image and metadata collection being available shortly following completion of quality control processes. Ultimately specimens and low resolution images may be most easily searched using the ‘Atlas of Living Australia’ and ‘Australasian Virtual Herbarium’ platforms.

New additions to the Herbarium collection will be made available quarterly as additions are curated and imaged.

The digitisation project is a significant first step towards the relocation of the Herbarium to a new facility at the Australian Botanic Garden Mount Annan in 2021, and will form part of the Australian Institute of Botanic Science.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has made the National Herbarium of New South Wales data freely available on Amazon S3 so that scientists, students, and the public alike may use the collection for biodiversity assessment, systematic botanical research, ecosystem conservation, policy development, for educational and other outreach tools.

Learn more about how Herbarium data is used here

‘Accessing the collection’ and “Herbarium data: Global biodiversity and societal botanical needs for novel research" published in Applications in Plant Sciences (2018) 6:e1024 (Reference).

Accessing the National Herbarium of New South Wales on AWS

Image data are organized by NSW specimen barcode number. For example, the file for a specimen of Dodonaea lobulata can be accessed here

A zipped csv containing the biocollections metadata for the images is available as a DarwinCore Archive here

Information about Darwin Core Archives and the metadata contained within can be found here

Instructions on how to access image data can be found here

Receive Data Notifications with Amazon SNS

The following ARN is for an Amazon SNS topic that provides notifications whenever a new National Herbarium of NSW batch has been added to the dataseton AWS:

An Amazon S3 event message is published whenever a new .jp2 file has been created, which is the last step in the process to make image data available on Amazon S3. It will only accept subscriptions via Amazon SQS or AWS Lambda.

Learn more about subscribing to SNS topics.