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Import a downloaded file from GBIF.


  x = NULL,
  key = NULL,
  path = ".",
  fill = FALSE,
  encoding = "UTF-8",
) = ".", key = NULL)

# S3 method for character = ".", key = NULL)

# S3 method for download = ".", key = NULL)



The output of a call to occ_download_get


A key generated from a request, like that from occ_download


Path to unzip file to. Default: "." Writes to folder matching zip file name


(logical) (default: FALSE). If TRUE then in case the rows have unequal length, blank fields are implicitly filled. passed on to fill parameter in data.table::fread.


(character) encoding to read in data; passed to data.table::fread(). default: "UTF-8". other allowed options: "Latin-1" and "unknown". see ?data.table::fread docs


parameters passed on to data.table::fread(). See fread docs for details. Some fread parameters that may be particular useful here are: select (select which columns to read in; others are dropped), nrows (only read in a certain number of rows)


a tibble (data.frame)


You can provide either x as input, or both key and path. We use data.table::fread() internally to read data.


see downloads for an overview of GBIF downloads methods

Problems reading data

You may run into errors when using occ_download_import(); most often these are due to data.table::fread() not being able to parse the occurrence.txt file correctly. The fill parameter passes down to data.table::fread() and the ... allows you to pass on any other parameters that data.table::fread() accepts. Read the docs for fread for help.

countryCode result column and Namibia

The country code for Namibia is "NA". Unfortunately in R an "NA" string will be read in to R as an NA/missing. To avoid this, in this function we read in the data, then convert an NA/missing values to the character string "NA". When a country code is truly missing it will be an empty string.


if (FALSE) {
# First, kick off at least 1 download, then wait for the job to be complete
# Then use your download keys
res <- occ_download_get(key="0000066-140928181241064", overwrite=TRUE)

occ_download_get(key="0000066-140928181241064", overwrite = TRUE) %>%

# coerce a file path to the right class to feed to occ_download_import
# = "0000066-140928181241064")
# occ_download_import(""))

# download a dump that has a CSV file
# res <- occ_download_get(key = "0001369-160509122628363", overwrite=TRUE)
# occ_download_import(res)
# occ_download_import(key = "0001369-160509122628363")

# download and import a species list (in csv format)
# x <- occ_download_get("0000172-190415153152247")
# occ_download_import(x)