Biodiv Sci ›› 2021, Vol. 29 ›› Issue (1): 118-122.  DOI: 10.17520/biods.2020235

• Technology and Methodologies • Previous Articles     Next Articles

SP2000: An open-sourced R package for querying the Catalogue of Life

Liuyong Ding1,2, Hao Li3, Juan Tao1,2, Jinlong Zhang4, Minrui Huang1,2, Ke Yang1,2, Jun Wang1,2, Chengzhi Ding1,2,*(), Daming He1,2,*()   

  1. 1 Institute of International Rivers and Eco-security, Yunnan University, Kunming 650504
    2 Yunnan Key Laboratory of International Rivers and Transboundary Eco-security, Yunnan University, Kunming 650504
    3 National Pilot School of Software, Yunnan University, Kunming 650504
    4 Flora Conservation Department, Kadoorie Farm and Botanic Garden, Hong Kong 999077
  • Received:2020-06-11 Accepted:2020-08-12 Online:2021-01-20 Published:2020-10-22
  • Contact: Chengzhi Ding,Daming He


Aims: The Catalogue of Life provides the basis for understanding both regional and global biodiversity. With the invention and development of the internet, the up-to-date species checklists stored in the public databases has greatly promoted the development of taxonomy, conservation biology, and macroecology. Public species checklists play an indispensable role in biodiversity conservation and aid in the assessment of species’ conversation status. The Species 2000 China Node ( and the Catalogue of Life ( are among the leading online databases in cataloguing biodiversity, contain 122,280 and 1,829,672 taxa respectively (including infraspecific taxa). Although searching the content of the websites may be relatively straightforward, downloading the data and transferring it into a statistical environment for further analysis can present challenges.
Method: To address this issue, we developed the package SP2000 using the R programming language.
Application: SP2000 is an open-source, cross-platform, and user-friendly package which aims to help users query and download the checklist of organisms (including animals, plants, fungi, and microbes) from within and outside China. Here we introduce and describe the usage of SP2000 including installation, and configuration of parameters.

Key words: species checklist, redlist, China’s biodiversity, R package