Barcoding Projects

There are many international barcoding activities dedicated to the development of targeted public reference BARCODE sequence libraries.

Featured Projects


CBOL Fungal Working Group

All Fungi Barcoding provides up-to-date information on fungal barcoding and facilitates communication and collaboration among researchers interested in fungi.

Bee Barcode of Life Initiative (Bee-BOL)

Bee-BOL, the Bee Barcode of Life Initiative, is a global effort to coordinate the assembly of a standardized reference sequence library for all ~20,000 bee species. Bee-BOL is creating a valuable public resource in the form of an electronic database containing DNA barcodes, images, and geospatial coordinates of examined specimens. The database contains linkages to voucher specimens, information on species distributions, nomenclature, authoritative taxonomic information, collateral natural history information and literature citations.

Coral Reef Barcode of Life

The Coral Reef Barcode of Life campaign is a detailed barcode study of fishes at one site in the Great Barrier Reef to generate a barcode library that will aid taxonomic work by clarifying species boundaries and by revealing cryptic taxa.

European Consortium for the Barcode of Life (ECBOL)

ECBOL is an information and coordination hub on DNA barcoding in Europe organized within EDIT, the European Institute of Taxonomy and maintained by CBS, the Centraalbureau voor Schimmelcultures in Utrecth. The ECBOL initiative (Calibrating European Biodiversity using DNA Barcodes) is a network of European researchers and is seeking to obtain funding fro the coordination and maintenance of a Network of European Leading Labs.

Fish Barcode of Life Campaign (FISH-BOL)

FISH-BOL, the Fish Barcode of Life campaign, is collecting barcodes from at least five specimens representing the 30,000+ species of marine, freshwater and estuarine fish of the world. Like ABBI, FISH-BOL has a central Steering Committee and Regional Working Groups.


HealthBOL coordinates initiatives to barcode vectors, pathogens, and parasites for the betterment of human health around the world.

Lepidoptera Barcode of Life

The aim of the Lepidoptera Barcode of Life campaign is to build a COI barcode library for all butterfly and moth species. This library will permit the rapid, reliable identification of Lepidoptera at any stage of their development (egg, caterpillar, pupa or adult) and will facilitate the discovery and description of new species. Such barcode libraries, in combination with the ones built for other groups of terrestrial animals, will make possible the detailed biodiversity maps required to guide the positioning of protected areas and to monitor the status of terrestrial life.

Mammalia Barcode of Life Campaign

The Mammalia Barcode of Life campaign is a part of the larger effort encompassing all vertebrates, and aims to build a comprehensive reference library of DNA barcodes for the global mammal fauna. The campaign seeks to assemble a broad global coalition of leading researchers, museums, and other institutions with interest in mammal taxonomy and biodiversity

Marine Barcode of Life (MarBOL)

MarBOL is an international campaign to obtain at least 50,000 barcode records of marine species by October 2010. MarBOL is led by an international Steering Committee and an affiliated project of the Census of Marine Life (CoML).

Mosquito Barcode Initiative (MBI)

MBI, the Mosquito Barcode Initiative is another "demonstration project" aimed at producing a global operational system for identifying mosquitoes in two years. MBI plans to barcode at least five specimens from 80% of the 3200 known mosquito species. Disease-bearing species and their closest relatives will be the highest priority.

Polar Barcode of Life (PolarBOL)

The Polar Barcode of Life campaign coordinates barcoding efforts in ongoing bioinventory projects in Arctic and Antarctic marine, freshwater and terrestrial ecosystems.

Quarantine Barcode of Life (QBOL)

QBOL is a project financed by the 7th Framework Program of the European Union that makes collections harboring plantpathogenic quarantine organisms available. Informative genes from selected species on the EU Directive and EPPO lists are DNA barcoded from vouchered specimens. In the next 3 year the sequences, together with taxonomic features, will be included in an internet-based database system.

Shark Barcode of Life (SharkBOL)

The Shark Barcode of Life project aims to barcode the 1,000 marine and 100 freshwater shark species.

Sponge Barcoding Project (SpongeBOL)

The Sponge Barcoding Project is the first global barcoding project on any diploblast taxon and covers the complete taxonomic range of Porifera.

Tephritid Barcode Initiative (TBI)

TBI, the Tephritid Barcode Initiative is a two-year "demonstration project" that will create an operational system for identifying fruit flies around the world. TBI will barcode at least five representatives of all tephritid fruit flies that are either (1) agricultural pests, (2) beneficial species used for biological control of other pests, (3) closely related to pests or beneficial species; and (4) representative species from other families of tephritids. TBI plans to obtain barcodes from approximately 2000 species of the estimated 4500 known tephritid species.

Trichoptera Barcode of Life (TrichopteraBOL)

Trichoptera Barcode of Life is a long-term project to barcode the world’s approximately 13,000 species of caddisflies.

Protist Working Group logo

CBOL Protist Working Group (ProWG)

The Protist Working Group is charged with the task of establishing the standard BARCODE region(s) for protists. Once approved, this standard will undoubtedly spark a wide range of barcoding projects in protist taxonomy, ecology, environmental monitoring, and other areas. 

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