The Atlas of European Mammals was published in 1999, with most of the data being rather older than this. The Atlas is now out of print and the underlying data, though still available through this website, are getting more and more out of date. Is the time right for a new project to update the Atlas?
Since the beginning of the first atlas project in 1988, mammal mapping across Europe has improved greatly. Many countries have now published their own mammal atlas, or have a project to do so, and some have live on-line databases that can produce a new map on demand. However, the picture is uneven and our Atlas remains the only publication that covers a significant part of Europe in a consistent and objective way, using mammal records supplied by each country. It remains an important source work for anyone studying the distribution of mammals at a large scale.
A new atlas project would, of course, be a cooperative venture, involving input from mammalogists or mammal mappers from each country. For some, this may be relatively straightforward, for others much more challenging. An immediate question is whether it would be possible to extend coverage to the whole of geographic Europe, rather than just western Europe as previously. This almost doubles the area to be mapped and includes large areas where mammalogists are few and far-between.