Academic investigations into and field surveys of the Senkaku Islands have been conducted since before it was incorporated into Japanese territory. In 1900, Kuroiwa Hisashi and Miyajima Mikinosuke visited the Senkakus on the request of Koga Tatsushiro, and their survey reports were published in Chigaku Zasshi (Journal of Geography). A variety of surveys have been conducted in the postwar period, such as the five expeditions by the University of the Ryukyus (these reports were collated and published by the Senkaku Islands Document Material Compilation Association under the name Takara Gakujutsu Chosadan [Takara Academic Research Group]) or the Academic Survey and Potential Development/Usage Survey conducted by the Japanese government's former Okinawa Development Agency (surveys conducted in 1979, "Report on the Senkaku Islands Survey" published in 1980).
Significant reports, particularly in terms of living things, include the 1900 report from Miyajima and Kuroiwa, the 1941 report from Masaki, the 1950s survey report from Takara and Tawada, the 1970 report from the University of the Ryukyus, and the 1980 report from the Okinawa Development Agency. Of these investigators, the University of the Ryukyus has been the most active in conducting studies on the Senkakus since World War II. Below is an archive of data concerning the local flora and fauna, based on the results of the main surveys.