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.
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. ENSP, working with the Rutgers Center for Remote Sensing and Spatial Analysis and with assistance from Conserve Wildlife Foundation staff, is currently developing a rare species sighting submittal website, known as "NJ Wildlife Tracker",which will enable wildlife watchers to submit rare species data in a much more user friendly and streamlined fashion.As soon as this website is available to the public, Conserve Wildlife Foundation of NJ will begin publicizing its availability.
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.
- Download NJ's list of all Endangered, Threatened, and Special Concern species.
NJ's List of Rare Species, updated December 2013 - 162.2KB
Complete list of New Jersey's Endangered, Threatened, and Special Concern species as of December 2013.
Michael J. Davenport, Marine Species & GIS Programs Manager: Email
Report a sighting
Report a sighting of a banded shorebird or rare species.
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