The Rio â€śEarth Summitâ€ť in 1992 heralded that biological diversity is a global asset that need to be now preserved and maintained for future generations. The species richness of a particular biota and its conservation became in the last decads even more important considering the rising rates in species extinction due to habitats erosion caused by human activities and the climatic changes.
The Biodiversity (here intended as alpha diversity or as species richness) conservation is based on the knowledge of the species present in a particular environment (biogeographic region), furthermore for a deeper understanding we cannot exclude the genetic level of biodiversity (Convention of Biological Diversity, Rio de Janeiro 1992). In order to pursue these purposes, our project is devoted to built a DNA repository of the Leaf Beetles distributed in the Mediterranean Region, one of the most biodiverse region of the world recognized within the first 25 Global Biodiversity Hotspots (Myers et al. 2000; Cuttelod et al. 2008), representative of the species genetic diversity.
Considering the difficulty to reach the scientific purposes of our initiative within a few years, the Chrysomelidae Barcoding (C-Bar) project was thought to be an â€śin progress planâ€ť in which the network of people and scientists actively involved makes possible that the knowledge on species distribution and species genetic variability increases year by year.
The public availability of the collected data can be useful as the base for the census and conservation initiatives on the fauna of nations, as well as in biogeographic studies.
Cuttelod, A., GarcĂa, N., Abdul Malak, D., Temple, H. and Katariya, V. 2008. The Mediterranean: a biodiversity hotspot under threat. In: J.-C. ViĂ©, C. Hilton-Taylor and S.N. Stuart (eds). The 2008 Review of The IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. IUCN Gland, Switzerland.
Myers, N., Mittermeier, R.A., Mittermeier, C.G., da Fonseca, G.A.B. and Kent, J. 2000. Biodiversity hotspots for conservation priorities. Nature 403: 853-858.