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New partners, more field books, cider celebrations and more! See what's new at BHL!

Inspiring Discovery through Free Access to Biodiversity Knowledge.

The  Biodiversity Heritage Library   (BHL) improves research methodology by collaboratively making biodiversity literature openly available to the world as part of a global biodiversity community.

BHL Welcomes Museum für Naturkunde Berlin as a New Member!

logo for Museum f_r Naturkunde Berlin

We are pleased to welcome the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin (MfN) as our newest Member. MfN is the first German museum to join the Biodiversity Heritage Library as a Member.

The Museum für Naturkunde Berlin (MfN) has been a part of the BHL global family for nearly a decade through BHL Europe. Launched in 2009 and coordinated by MfN, the three-year BHL Europe project aimed to improve the interoperability of European biodiversity digital libraries and bring together the digitization activities of institutions across the EU. As a BHL Member, Museum für Naturkunde Berlin will provide technical, digitization, and data management expertise and contribute rare and unique materials from its significant collections.

BHL Welcomes the Lloyd Library & Museum as a New Affiliate!

Lloyd Library _ Museum logo

We are  pleased to welcome the Lloyd Library & Museum  as our newest Affiliate. The Lloyd Library's affiliation builds upon a successful partnership established during the BHL Expanding Access to Biodiversity Literature project, where, in collaboration with Digital Services at the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County (PLCH), the Library uploaded 26 significant titles to BHL's collection.

As an Affiliate, the Lloyd will contribute additional titles identified from its collection that are not yet in BHL, providing free access to valued resources for both local and global communities.

For the Love of Cider: Celebrating Pomology, Apples, and Cider-Making with Cornell University Library

illustration of apples
One of the many books highlighted as part of the #CornellCider campaign.  The Herefordshire Pomona. v. 2 (1876-1885) . Art by Edith E. Bull. Contributed by Cornell University Library.

Cider-making is currently undergoing a revival in the United States, and historic literature provides an important record of many apple varieties used over the centuries in cider production.

This summer, BHL joined Cornell University Library in celebration of cider. To complement a new exhibit on cider-making, Apples to Cider: An Old Industry Takes Fresh Root, which is on display in Cornell's Mann Library lobby through October 2018, the Library created a new collection in BHL, " Pomology: Apples and Cider", featuring dozens of titles on a variety of cider and apple-related topics. The celebrations extended to social media with a #CornellCider campaign and a lecture by Dr. Gregory Peck on the history of cider production as part of the University's annual Cornell Reunion.

Thousands of Field Notes Now Available in BHL Thanks to the Field Notes Project! 

drawings of sea birds
One of the thousands of field notes digitized as part of the BHL Field Notes Project. Correia, José G. Whitney South Sea Expedition of the American Museum of Natural History. Letters and journal of José G. Correia. Volume 2. Contributed by American Museum of Natural History.

In February 2016, the Biodiversity Heritage Library set out to digitize over 450,000 pages of field notes. A collaborative project with eleven partners and funded by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) Digitizing Hidden Special Collections initiative, the Field Notes Project is BHL's largest undertaking of digitizing field notes to date. 

Project work wrapped up at the end of May 2018. The results? Over 517,000 pages of field notes have been digitized!

Explore the digitized field notes in BHL. Be sure to check back regularly, as more content will be added to the collection over the coming months.

Collection Highlights
Explore our Book of the Month features from the past quarter in these highlights. Check out the whole series on our blog.
Peter Henderson seed catalog cover from 1886
Seeds in the Stacks: A Closer Look at Two Seedsmen from the Golden Age

The U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agricultural Library has one of the world's largest collections of nursery and seed trade catalogs. They have digitized over 40,000 for BHL, including many from two seedsmen who epitomized the golden age of mail order catalogs: James Vick and Peter Henderson.

illustrations of apples
Celebrating Cider: The Herefordshire Pomona

The Herefordshire Pomona, issued by subscription in 7 parts between 1876-1885, documented the presence of over 400 apple and pear varieties in 19th century England. Compiled and edited by the eminent 19th century horticulturalist Robert Hogg and the physician Henry Graves Bull, it features illustrations by Alice Blanche Ellis and Edith Elizabeth Bull (thought to be Dr. Bull's daughter). It was recently contributed to BHL by Cornell University Library as part of the Cornell Cider celebrations.

illustration of orchid
Exploring One of the Rarest - and Largest - Orchid Books

At about 30" x 22" and weighing in at over 38 lbs, James Bateman's The Orchidaceae of Mexico and Guatemala ([1837]-1843) is the "largest botanical book ever produced with lithographic plates". Presenting many new-to-science species of orchids, the work is renowned for its lithographic plates, executed by Maxim Gauci based on drawings largely by Sarah Anne Drake and Augusta Withers and representing the first published illustrations for an estimated 90% of the 40 species included.

BHL User Testimonials
Learn how BHL supports research around the world in our BHL User series .
Supporting Worldwide Research

quote from Dr. Gregory Peck

Cider-making is undergoing a revival, but the true identities of many apple varieties used in the industry today are a mystery. How is BHL helping Cornell University professor Dr. Gregory Peck uncover the truth behind enigmatic apple cultivars? 

quote from Fern_ndez-_lvarez

The neon flying squid ( O. bartramii) has long been considered a monotypic, cosmopolitan species. Recent research by Dr. Fernando Á. Fernández-Álvarez and colleagues has shown that this "monotypic" species may not be so "mono" after all. Where does BHL come in?

Presentations, Events, and Workshops

Explore some of the BHL presentations, events, and workshops that staff have given and hosted over the past few months.

Get Involved with BHL!

There are many ways to get involved with BHL, from becoming a Member or  Affiliate and contributing content to donating to support BHL or  participating in one of our many citizen science activities.  Currently, BHL's volunteer opportunities include  Flickr image tagging , transcribing field books as part of  The Field Book Project , or describing illustrations via Science Gossip on Zooniverse

Support BHL

Providing researchers with free access to biodiversity knowledge is critical to saving life on Earth. Help us accomplish this goal by donating to BHL today!

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140,000+ Titles | 230,000+ Volumes | 54+ Million Pages