Australian Moths and Butterflies Are Barcoded

Australian moths and butterflies are being barcoded. There are 10,000 species in Australia and 65 per cent of them have been coded, 28,000 specimens in all. They are not flying around with a tag on them. DNA is analyzed then recorded with an image of a specimen in a barcode system.

The database is a combined project by the Atlas of Living Australia (ALA) and CSIRO's Australian National Insect Collection (ANIC). It is the first time such a system has been used to categorize a group of insects in a country. This is the beginning. Plans are in train to record most organisms worldwide.

The technology has been used to determine if wrongly named fish are being sold. It will be used to identify dangerous pests coming into Australia. Species will now be more effectively categorised in research.
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