Conserve Wildlife Blog

Posts Tagged ‘Story Map’

New Story Map Shows How Turtle Gardens Actually “Grow” Baby Terrapins

Monday, September 12th, 2016
Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey Releases a New Story Map: “Turtle Gardens”

By: Michael Davenport, Wildlife Biologist & GIS Program Manager

The northern diamondback terrapin is an imperiled species of turtle found in brackish coastal waters along the northeast coast of the United States. Within New Jersey, much of the nesting habitat once used by terrapins has been lost to development and rising sea level. What little suitable nesting habitat remains is often inaccessible to terrapins due to bulkheads or other construction and road mortality is a major cause of terrapin mortality as they cross roadways seeking nesting sites.

Screen-shot of the Turtle Gardens story map.

Screen-shot of the Turtle Gardens story map.

Turtle gardens provide suitable nesting habitat for diamondback terrapins where little natural suitable habitat remains or is inaccessible. By enhancing the existing habitat at a site within the terrapin’s range to meet their nesting habitat requirements, terrapins can more safely lay their eggs within an area specifically set-aside for them.

CWF recently partnered with the Marine Academy of Technology and Environmental Science (MATES) on a pilot project turtle garden on Long Beach Island in New Jersey. The newly released Turtle Gardens story map details this project.



Track the Bald Eagle’s Triumphant Return to New Jersey

Wednesday, February 17th, 2016
Updated Story Map Showcases Bald Eagle Nest Locations from 1985-2015

by Brian Henderson, GIS Specialist

Photo by Northside Jim

Photo by Northside Jim

Our story map The Return of Bald Eagles in New Jersey has been updated based on the 2015 Bald Eagle Project Report. The story map shows the locations of every eagle nest known to be active (meaning they laid eggs) in New Jersey since 1985  — the year when there was only a single nest in the entire state. The map presents an animated depiction of where eagles have nested each year, so you can track the bald eagle’s triumphant return to the Garden State! Viewing the animation shows you how eagle nests spread from a single point in Cumberland County across all of New Jersey through the years.


The story map also highlights a number of Feature Nests which include more detailed information about the projects underway at specific nests, such as the Duke Farm nest which has been featured on our EagleCam since 2008.


The number of nesting pairs of bald eagles has steadily increased each year. This trend continued in 2015 with a record 150 active pairs, which was a slight increase over 146 such pairs recorded in 2014. In 2015, there were 122 nests that successfully  fledged at least one young compared to 115 successful nests in 2014 and the 199 total young fledged in 2015 was only slightly less than the record 201 young fledged in 2014.


Learn More:


Brian Henderson is the GIS Specialist for Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey.

“Harbor Seals in New Jersey” – Conserve Wildlife Foundation’s Latest Story Map

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015
Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey Releases a New Story Map: “Harbor Seals in New Jersey”

By: Michael Davenport, GIS Program Manager


Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey (CWF) has partnered with Jenkinson’s Aquarium of Point Pleasant Beach, New Jersey to create and release our latest Story Map, “Harbor Seals in New Jersey.”

Seal Story MapOver the years, CWF staff have worked with a number of marine biologists in order to monitor seal populations in New Jersey and minimize disturbance or harm to them. Most recently, CWF held two workshops in 2014 to educate first responders on handling marine mammal (and sea turtle) strandings. We’re continuing our efforts at educating the public about these amazing animals with our “Harbor Seals in New Jersey” Story Map. A Story Map is a web-based interactive map embedded with multimedia content, such as text, photographs, and video.


The release of this Story Map coincides with the renovation of the seal exhibit at Jenkinson’s Aquarium. Jenkinson’s has been home for harbor seals since 1991, when their first seal (“Luseal”) moved in. She was soon joined by another seal, “Seaquin.”


This Story Map provides general information about harbor seals: where they live, how they live, and what dangers they face in the wild from both predators and humans. Luseal and Seaquin also have pages devoted to them, with photos and interesting facts about their lives and behaviors.


Learn more:


Michael Davenport is the GIS Program Manager for Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey.




Celebrate GIS Day with Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

By: Lindsay McNamara, Communications Coordinator

Data nerds rejoice! Today, Wednesday, November 19 is GIS Day. Geographic information systems (GIS) technology helps our wildlife biologists protect rare species throughout New Jersey. GIS technology is used to create our species range maps and other important tools that show where wildlife occur and what habitat they need to exist.

Conserve Wildlife Foundation is a key player in updating the NJ Endangered and Nongame Species Program’s (ENSP) database of rare wildlife species. The database called “Biotics” is a GIS and Oracle-based system developed by NatureServe, the leading source of information on the precise locations and conditions of rare and threatened species and ecological communities in the Western Hemisphere.

Although CWF and ENSP biologists submit a majority of the data on Biotics, we rely on the help of citizen scientists to fully understand the wildlife picture in New Jersey. Do you want to help biologists monitor certain areas of the state and locate the presence of species of concern? Visit our website to learn how you can get involved.

In addition to the Biotics database, GIS was used to create range maps for all 190 species featured on our online field guide! Check it out.

Have you seen our American Oystercatcher Story Map? GIS was used to create that tool as well! A Story Map is a web-based interactive GIS map embedded with all kinds of content, like text, photographs, and video.

“American Oystercatchers Through the Seasons”
 tells the story about a species of migratory bird, the American Oystercatcher, which spends the summer breeding season along the New Jersey coast, and is present year-round along the southern New Jersey coast. Learn more about our Story Map.

This GIS Day, take a look at all of the maps around you and consider supporting additional Conserve Wildlife Foundation Story Maps!

Lindsay McNamara is the Communications Coordinator for Conserve Wildlife Foundation of New Jersey.