Wildscreen's Arkive project was launched in 2003 and grew to become the world's biggest encyclopaedia of life on Earth.
With the help of over 7,000 of the world’s best wildlife filmmakers and photographers, conservationists and scientists, Arkive.org featured multi-media fact-files for more than 16,000 endangered species.
Freely accessible to everyone, over half a million people every month, from over 200 countries, used Arkive to learn and discover the wonders of the natural world.
Since 2013 Wildscreen was unable to raise sufficient funds from trusts, foundations, corporates and individual donors to support the year-round costs of keeping Arkive online. Therefore, the charity had been using its reserves to keep the project online and was unable to fund any dedicated staff to maintain Arkive, let alone future-proof it, for over half a decade. Despite appeals for support, just 85 of our 5.6 million users in 2018 made a donation.
As a small conservation charity, Wildscreen eventually reached the point where it could no longer financially sustain the ongoing costs of keeping Arkive free and online or invest in its much needed development.
For many years, and in an attempt to keep Arkive online for years to come, Wildscreen investigated the possibility of transferring custodianship of the website to another environmental charity or institution but due to legal issues and the cost of doing so, we were unable to secure any support.
Therefore, a very hard decision was made to take the www.arkive.org website offline in February 2019.
The complete Arkive collection of over 100,000 images and videos is now being stored securely offline in perpetuity for future generations.