[API-users] Few queries regarding downloaded occurrence.text data

Markus Döring mdoering at gbif.org
Tue Apr 28 15:40:05 CEST 2015

Hi Priyank,

> 1. What should be my primary key for species table? I see 'speciesKey' column as a candidate, but it is set as null for some species. The occurrence record has a scientific name but no speciesKey. Any suggestions on this? What field I can use as unique identifier for species?
taxonKey is the primary key, speciesKey points to the accepted species but your occurrence might be linked to a subspecies or even a synonym name

> 2. Vernacular names are missing for almost all the occurrences. Is there any API by which I can also obtain vernacular names for a species? http://api.gbif.org/v1/species/{int}/vernacularNames <http://api.gbif.org/v1/species/{int}/vernacularNames> seems to do the job, but what is {int} (speciesKey?) and how do I get it from occurrence data?
As you said use the species API to get vernacular names. {int} is the taxonKey from the occurrence record. 212, birds in this case:
http://api.gbif.org/v1/species/212/vernacularNames <http://api.gbif.org/v1/species/212/vernacularNames>

> 3. I also need few representative images of the species. http://api.gbif.org/v1/species/{int}/media <http://api.gbif.org/v1/species/{int}/media> seems to do the job, but it returns a large image and I am looking for a small thumbnail image. Any way to accomplish this? Also, any API that can provide me both the vernacular names and imge url in single API call?
I am afraid that does not exist. We use an image cache internally that produces thumbnails, but its not part of the public API.
We also do not have flagged just one image as the representative. And watch out for the media type, it can also be videos or sounds.


> Thanks,
> Priyank
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