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Wildlife Fact:

A humpback whale can live for 45 to 50 years.


Rare Species Mapping Project

Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey plays a leading role in maintaining and updating the NJ Endangered and Nongame Species Program's (ENSP) database of rare animal species.

Image of Species Mapping.Zoom+ Species Mapping.

This Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Oracle-based database is called "Biotics". Biotics was developed by NatureServe, a nonprofit organization representing a network of member programs comprising most states within the United States, Canadian provinces and several countries within Latin America and it is the leading source of information on the precise locations and conditions of rare and threatened species and ecological communities in the Western Hemisphere.

Although much of the information within Biotics on imperiled species is received from Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ and ENSP biologists, a great deal of useful data is also submitted by the public since, although NJ is a relatively small state, the biologists are unable to survey all areas at all times. The biologists rely on these "citizen scientists" to help them monitor areas which they are unable to and/or locate the presence of species in areas in which they were previously unknown to occur.

The biologists rely on citizen scientists to help monitor areas which they are unable to and locate species in areas in which they were previously unknown to occur.

Wildlife watchers who observe rare wildlife may report such observations by submitting a Rare Wildlife Sighting Report Form which then gets processed and mapped by Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ staff.

Image of Landscape project map.Zoom+ Landscape project map.

Rare species data within the Biotics database plays a critical role in wildlife and habitat conservation within New Jersey. Biotics data is the foundation of the NJ DEP's Landscape Project, a GIS product that maps critical areas for imperiled species based upon species locations and land-use classifications. The resulting maps allow state, county, municipal, and private agencies to identify important wildlife habitats and protect them in a variety of ways. This information is used to regulate land-use within the state and assists in preserving endangered and threatened species habitat remaining in New Jersey. Besides Landscape Project mapping, Biotics data is used for a number of additional scientific and conservation efforts such as Critical Wildlife Habitat Mapping (another NJ DEP GIS product), environmental review, research (GIS modeling), status review (determining whether a non-listed species should become listed as endangered or threatened and vice versa), and it also assists biologists in targeting future survey efforts to new areas.

Additional Resources:
  • Download NJ's list of all Endangered, Threatened, and Special Concern species.

    Download NJ's List of Rare Species, updated January 2016

    NJ's List of Rare Species, updated January 2016 - 197.7KB
    Complete list of New Jersey's Endangered, Threatened, and Special Concern species as of January 2016.

  • Download a folder containing a formatted Excel spreadsheet for electronic submittal of rare wildlife observations (also contains a list of species for which observation data is being sought).

    Download Rare Wildlife Observation Forms

    Rare Wildlife Observation Forms - 24.9KB
    A folder containing a list of rare species tracked by the NJ Endangered and Nongame Species Program (ENSP) as well as a blank spreadsheet to use for submitting observations of rare wildlife to ENSP.

Contact Us:

Michael J. Davenport, GIS Program Manager: Email


Report a sighting

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Report a sighting of a banded shorebird or rare species.


Special Concern

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Learn about some of the newest species in decline in New Jersey. From the bottlenose dolphin to the fowler's toad, this special listing applies to a growing list of species. Learn ways to help these sensitive species in New Jersey.

>>Explore our Field Guide


Harbor Seals in New Jersey Story Map

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Use interactive web-mapping and multi-media to learn about harbor seals in New Jersey. Where they live in the world, where they are frequently seen in New Jersey, information about their ecology, as well as threats to their survival. Also profiles two seals which live at Jenkinson’s Aquarium in Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey: Luseal & Seaquin.

>> Visit the Story Map


American Oystercatcher Story Map

Image of American Oystercatcher Story Map Home Page

Use interactive web-mapping and multi-media to follow American oystercatchers throughout the year as they migrate between northern breeding sites and southern wintering spots & learn about their life history and the various threats they encounter along the way.

>> Visit the Story Map