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Name of Collaboratory :


Census of Marine Zooplankton (CMarZ)


URL :  

Collaboratory Status :

Completed   Start Date : 2004 End Date : 2010 Info Last Updated : Fri, Dec 2 2011 1:00pm PST

Primary Collaboratory Function :

  Community Data Systems  

Secondary Collaboratory Functions :

  Distributed Research Center  

Domain(s) :

  EARTH, ATMOSPHERIC, AND OCEAN SCIENCES >Oceanography >Oceanography, EARTH, ATMOSPHERIC, AND OCEAN SCIENCES >Oceanography >Marine Sciences  

Brief Description of the Collaboratory :


CMarZ is a group of scientists, students and others interested in zooplankton from around the world who are working toward a taxonomically comprehensive assessment of biodiversity of animal plankton throughout the world ocean, a field project of the Census of Marine Life.

It was a global, taxonomically comprehensive biodiversity assessment of animal plankton, including ~6,800 described species in fifteen phyla.

They worked on determining a DNA barcode (short DNA sequence for species identification) for each species.

They sponsored activities such as taxonomic training workshops, sponsors student and researcher visits to CMarZ laboratories.

They maintained a distributed data system of biological and physical information from CMarZ related cruises.

They provide image galleries of living plankton.

Technology plays a great role in CMarZ's research, including the use of integrated morphological and molecular sampling through DNA Barcoding. CMarZ makes its datasets available via the CMarZ Database.

Part of the Census of Marine Life collaboratory and the MarBOL collaboratory.


Access to Instruments :


Access to Information Resources :

  CMarZ makes its datasets available via the CMarZ Database, which is freely accessible online.

Several CMarZ laboratories focus on molecular systematic analysis of zooplankton groups. Each laboratory ensures storage, archiving, and vouchering of specimens sent by CMarZ researchers, who may be focused on taxonomic, morphological, or ecological studies. Identified specimens are sequenced within a reasonable time frame, and the DNA sequences submitted to the GenBank molecular database. Voucher specimens and voucher DNA are permanently maintained by the molecular laboratory, and are accessible for scientific study.

They maintain a distributed data system of biological and physical information from CMarZ related cruises.

Access to People as Resources :


Funding Agency or Sponsor :

Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
University of New Hampshire
Institute for the Study of Earth, Oceans, and Space (University of New Hampshire) (EOS)

Notes on Funding Agencies/Sponsors:
Also supported by the Census of Marine Life Program.

Organizations with Funded Participants:
Organization name:
Approx # of participants:
Description of organization's role(s):
Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research
Europe Project Office; Network Member; Area of Expertise: Euphausiid ecology and physiology, climatic adaptability, Ecology and identification of marine calanoid copepods from Red Sea, Indonesia and Antarctic waters.; Area of Expertise: Antarctic ecosystems, copepods; Area of Expertise: Numerical ecology, Optical and remote sensing of planktonic species, Data processing algorithms.
University of Connecticut (UConn)
   Marine Sciences Program (UConn)
Lead Project Office; Network Member; Area of Expertise: molecular systematics of crustacean zooplankton, tintinnids; Can provide samples for analysis to CMarZ Network members from Antarctic, NW Atlantic.; Area of expertise: Maintaining the CMarZ Database
University of Tokyo
Asia Project Office; Network Member; Area of Expertise: molecular systematics of zooplankton; CMarZ taxonomic expert: Southeast Asia, copepod taxonomy

Notes on Participants/Organizations:
They had numerous symposia, steering group meetings, workshops, etc. during the life of the project.

They have a science plan which provides a statement of project priorities and goals, and which serves as a programmatic umbrella for use by interested scientists and others.

The CMarZ Steering Group includes all planning workshop participants, plus additional people who can represent particular geographic areas and/or taxonomic groups (as needed).

The CMarZ Steering Group electd a Chair and Vice-Chair, and may choose to select an Executive Group for efficient operation and oversight of program activities. Responsibilities of the Steering Group as a whole include: evaluation of application for CMarZ endorsement; distribution of discretionary funds; coordination and oversight for taxonomic expert groups, special focus and ad hoc groups, and outreach groups; coordination of outreach activities; oversight of database management activities; interfacing with national funding agencies and programs; and coordination and collaboration with other CoML projects.

The CMarZ Project offices are located in N. America (University of Connecticut, USA, the lead office), Europe (Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, Germany), and Asia (University of Tokyo, Japan). The program offices host the Secretariat (i.e., an organization centered around the program office) that assists the investigators and Steering Committee members, and coordinates and sponsors program workshops and meetings. The program offices provide regional leadership, to ensure coordination among project scientists, and to secure funding from national and regional programs and agencies.

The following collaboratories are also listed as Network Members:
South African Environmental Observation Network


Communications Technology Used :


Technical Capabilities :

  Key Articles :    

Project-reported performance data :

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