Showing posts with label NBII. Show all posts
Showing posts with label NBII. Show all posts

Friday, June 11, 2010

First Detailed National Map of Land-Cover Vegetation Released Will Help Determine Places with Habitat to Support Wildlife

The most detailed national vegetation U.S. land-cover map to date was released today by the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The map will enable conservation professionals to identify places in the country with sufficient habitat to support wildlife.

The map, produced by the USGS Gap Analysis Program (GAP), can be viewed online and downloaded for free.

“These data are critical for determining the status of biodiversity, as baseline data for assessing climate change impacts, and for predicting the availability of habitat for wildlife,” said John Mosesso, Gap Analysis Program Manager. “Large datasets of this type are extremely important to land and wildlife managers because they allow for analysis and planning across extensive geographic areas.”

The GAP national land cover data, based on the NatureServe Ecological Systems Classification, is the most detailed, consistent map of vegetative associations ever available for the United States and will help facilitate the planning and management of biological diversity on a regional and national scale.

GAP’s mission is to keep common species common by providing information on the status of native species. The creation and dissemination of the national landcover dataset and online map viewer furthers that goal by putting crucial information into the hands of conservation professionals. Information about land cover is a key component of effective conservation planning and the management of biological diversity. 

Landcover Map Portrays Complex Data
The final version of the landcover map contains 551 Ecological Systems and modified Ecological Systems (the modified ecological systems represent 32 land use classes which depict developed and/or disturbed land cover classes). The map combines data from previous GAP projects in the Southwest, Southeast, and Northwest United States with recently updated California data. For areas of the continental United States where ecological system-level GAP data has not yet been developed, data from the LANDFIRE project compiled by Landscope was used. This allows for the construction of a seamless representation of ecological system distributions across the continental United States.

The map also meets natural resources agencies’ need for a way to characterize land cover. Finally, the new map furthers the mission of GAP to promote conservation by providing state, regional, and national assessments of the conservation status of land cover types to resource managers, planners, and policy makers who can use the map and its underlying data to make informed decisions.

Online Map Viewer Shows Data at Multiple Scales
The online map viewing interface has been designed to allow users to explore land cover data at three levels of complexity.  Level 1 contains eight classes: grassland, shrubland, forest, aquatic, sparse and barren, recently disturbed, riparian, and human land use. Level 2 contains 43 classes, and incorporates information on elevation and climate. Level 3 contains the full 583 classes. This online tool facilitates exploration of ecological system distribution patterns at multiple scales and allows users to calculate statistics on the types of vegetation occurring within a mapping zone, a state, or a county.

As part of the USGS National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII) — a collaborative program coordinated by the USGS to provide increased access to data and information on the nation’s biological resources — GAP data and associated analytical tools have been used in hundreds of applications, from basic research to comprehensive state wildlife plans, and from education projects in schools to ecoregional assessments of biodiversity.

GAP has developed land cover data since the 1980s — initially on a state-by-state basis and more recently on a regional basis. The national land cover map provides seamless coverage across political boundaries, facilitating its use by governmental agencies, researchers, conservation organizations and others.

(Photo: Online Map Viewer for Land-Cover Classification Map. The GAP (GAP Analysis Program) online map viewer shows land cover classifications at three levels. Courtesy of the U.S. Geological Survey Multimedia Gallery)
(This technical announcement was originally published by the U.S. Geological Survey)

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Webinar on NBII's Raptor Search Engine Now Online

NBII's Raptor is not your ordinary Web search engine! A brief webinar that gives background on this specialized search engine is now available through the Help link above the Raptor search box found on every NBII Web page , or by going directly to the Raptor Webinar page.  From the webinar, the viewer-listener can learn the reasons that the NBII implemented Raptor, and how the NBII chooses information and Web sites to add to sources searched by Raptor (users are invited to make suggestions for more additions).  The use of Raptor's unique features are also explained, including using the clustering function to enable exploration, discovery, and learning not possible with other search engines.  An e-mail address to use for sending suggestions and feedback is given at the end of the webinar.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Jamaica Bay BioBlitz 2010!

Rebecca Boger and John Marra of Brooklyn College, City University of New York (CUNY), along with the National Park Service (NPS) and Jamaica Bay Institute (JBI), are conducting a Bioblitz of Gateway National Recreation Area’s Jamaica Bay Unit from 3 p.m. Friday, June 11, through 3 p.m. Saturday, June 12, 2010. This Bioblitz is part contest (racing against the 24-hour clock), part educational event, and part scientific endeavor. Experts, amateur naturalists, and volunteers will work 4-hour shifts to observe as many plants and animals as possible in order to create a biodiversity snapshot of one of the most urban national parks in the country. Having supported previous Bioblitz’ in 2007 and 2009, the Jamaica Bay Research and Management Information Network (JBRMIN), hosted by the National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII)'s Northeast Information Node (NIN) at the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN), is the official Web site of the 2010 BioBlitz and is handling online registration as well as dissemination of forms, information packets, schedules, data sheets, programs, and press releases to participants and the public. If you wish to participate in this intense scientific survey or related public programs, just visit the 2010 BioBlitz page at You can also follow the Bioblitz on Twitter at

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

National Park Service Data Store Shares Records with NBII Metadata Clearinghouse

The National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII) and National Park Service (NPS) have partnered to share NPS metadata records through the NBII Clearinghouse. Metadata records from the NPS Data Store have increased the holdings in the NBII Clearinghouse by nearly 17,000 -- resulting in increased ability for Clearinghouse users to access data from approximately 90,000 metadata records. To search for NPS data or data from other NBII partners, visit the NBII Metadata Clearinghouse. For more information on metadata and contributing to the NBII Clearinghouse, contact Viv Hutchison.

(Photo: Red mangrove islands (Rhizophora mangle).  Photo by Randolph Femmer, courtesy of the NBII LIFE).

Monday, March 22, 2010

Hawaii Early Detection Network Update Hawaii Early Detection Network has conducted invasive species identification workshops with the Pacific Whale Foundation, Maui County road crews in Hana, and the nearly 100 U.S. Department of Agriculture-Animal Plant Health Inspection Service baggage inspectors. This partnership between the Pacific Basin Information Node (PBIN), the Island Invasive Species Committees (ISCs), and the state of Hawaii trains members of the public to become the “eyes and ears” on the watch for new invasive pests. All participants in the workshops learned how to conduct tests for little fire ant (Wasmannia auropunctata), one of the newest invaders of Maui County.  The little fire ant is considered one of the “world’s worst” invaders by the IUCN SSC Invasive Species Specialist Group and has major detrimental environmental and economic impacts on other Pacific islands.  Participants are encouraged to report all suspicious invasive plants and animals to the PBIN invasive species reporting system.

(Photo: Little fire ant (Wasmannia auropunctata); Image: SM Gallagher, AntWeb, hosted by California Academy of Sciences.

Monday, March 15, 2010

The NBII Library of Images From the Environment (NBII LIFE) - Accessed by Users Worldwide

The NBII Library of Images From the Environment (NBII LIFE) is a collaborative platform for agencies, organizations, and individual partners to share high quality, authoritative images of our natural world. Subjects cover species, species interactions, landscapes, research, management, and environmental topics. The goal is to manage images as scientific records and ensure they are useful for future research and decision making.

Contributors and images must meet certain criteria, including that the images are available for nonprofit use and that detailed information (e.g., date, location, and context) is attached.

These standards and subject diversity make LIFE a valuable resource – as research and user feedback have confirmed. One type of user we get feedback from are those who contribute images to LIFE; examples include Finding Species, different groups within the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), and the U.S. National Herbarium, Smithsonian Institution. But who in the broader community is accessing the site, and how do they use the images?

There are limits to what the U.S. government can record about users accessing government Web sites, but we know hundreds of thousands of people viewed millions of pages within the NBII LIFE in 2009, most from U.S. government computers. Globally, an average of 150 countries (out of 203 recorded) also had users entering the library each month. Leading countries include Canada, Great Britain, and India; but small countries such as Liechtenstein and Vatican City also accessed the NBII LIFE Web site.

Many organizations point to the NBII LIFE as a resource, including the U.S. Bureau of Land Management. Other federal sites include the USGS, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), and the Library of Congress. The Academy of Natural SciencesVireo Web site includes the LIFE under “Sites Worth Seeing” and Matcha College lists LIFE in an article, “100 Excellent Websites for Exploring the Ocean Online”.

LIFE is also finding that diverse organizations are using
photographs for exhibits, Web sites, publications, and research, including federal agencies such as the USGS (the biggest user), the USFWS, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the National Institute of Health, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), and the Smithsonian Institution. Local and state agencies (e.g., New York State’s Department of Environmental Conservation) and nonprofits (e.g., the Defenders of Wildlife) have also used LIFE's images. One research project incorporating LIFE images is the Tree of Life project.

News and information organizations also have used NBII LIFE images to illustrate online articles, including Public Radio International, Encyclopedia Britannica, Wikipedia, the Washington Post, and Science magazine. Also, hundreds of educational sites incorporate LIFE images into their lesson plans: students have used images for book reports and in computer modeling classes. Other users include libraries, museums, botanical gardens, film makers, artists, and bloggers. Users’ interests have been very diverse.

The NBII LIFE's images may soon be used in additional ways. The LIFE team is partnering with the Global Biodiversity Information Facility to make image metadata available to more researchers, especially modelers. Metadata about a photograph of a rare bird at a certain place and time could be fed into models predicting the effects of climate change on species distributions. Schema development is under way.

The LIFE team looks forward to increased use and further feedback, with the Web site’s latest tools online, continuing image uploads, and a new strategic plan to increase capabilities.

Photos from the NBII LIFE: (from top) Cactus (Sempervivum sp., Echeveria sp.) Cactus rosettes fill a garden bed. Photo by © 2008 Elizabeth A. Sellers; U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) hydrologist making a mini-piezometer measurement on the Yakima River to determine if ground-water discharge is occurring in this salmon rearing area. Photo by W. Simmonds; American bullfrog floats among lily pads (Rana catesbeiana). Photo by © 2008 Bruce Avera Hunter (Copyright held by Creator); Blue Ridge Parkway with fall foliage. Photo by Tanya Schoenhoff; Print and online publications using NBII LIFE images; A male scarlet tanager (Piranga olivacea) ready to be released after receiving a metal leg band applied by a wildlife biologist. Photo by © 2009 Elizabeth A. Sellers.

This is a revised version of the article published in the Winter 2010 (Vol. 13, No. 1) issue of the NBII Access Newsletter.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Tom Hermann of the U.S Geological Survey's Biological Informatics Office Named 2009 Fellow by the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Tom Hermann of the U.S Geological Survey’s Biological Informatics Office, was recently named a 2009 Fellow by the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Hermann’s distinguished work at USGS has produced outstanding efforts to advance biological science and its communication. BIO’s mission is to create the informatics network, provide the scientific content, and develop public and private partnerships needed for the understanding and stewardship of the nation’s biological resources.

Tom Hermann

“We’re so pleased and proud that Tom has gained this honor,” said Gladys Cotter, USGS Associate Chief Biologist for Information and head of BIO. “It’s a tribute to his talents that also speaks well of the efforts of so many of the information, scientific and communications professionals he works with at USGS, other government agencies and numerous organizations worldwide.”

As Chief Knowledge Manager, Hermann oversees all formulation and communication of the USGS-National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII) Program, one of BIO’s core components. As such, Hermann ensures all manner of biological information is made available to U.S. citizens quickly, reliably and efficiently. These data and information are distributed through a variety of formats and channels, including webpages, digital images, geospatial referencing data and a wide range of scientific and outreach publications.

Hermann has worked closely with the Department of the Interior on many topics of interest, such as amphibians. He helped shape strategies to improve access to amphibian knowledge and scientific information (nearly every state has reported noteworthy cases of amphibian deformities). Action from the NBII Program, managed by Hermann, included the development of NBII FrogWeb, an interactive website that provides current research and information. The department, the National Wildlife Federation, and the public television series, Kratt’s Creatures, also participated. This was the first time a partnership with other government agencies and non-government organizations provided integrated access to amphibian data and information.

Hermann is also responsible for the continuing growth and sophistication of the NBII Library of Images From the Environment (NBII LIFE), a collaborative platform for agencies, organizations and individual partners to share high-quality, authoritative images of the natural world. Subjects cover species, species interactions, landscapes, research, management and environmental topics. The goal is to manage images as scientific records and ensure they are useful for future research and decision-making.

At the international level, Hermann’s leadership in the development of the NATO Scientific, Technology, and Research Network (STARNET) grew out of his chairmanship of the Information Management Committee of the NATO Research and Technology Agency. He developed STARNET to facilitate access to information elements already existing within NATO agencies and NATO member countries in science, technology and overall research. This is the first time in the history of the NATO alliance that member countries can access these data using a one-stop interface. Hermann continues to lead a team of experts in information science in content development of STARNET’s Environmental and Biological Sciences Information Node. This vital NATO capability impacts the bureau as well as the scientific community and, by its very nature, is also helping to contribute to our national security.

Hermann holds a B.A. in Communications from the University of Maryland and an M.S. in Information Resource Management from Syracuse University. His awards at USGS have included the Meritorious Service Award, which may be granted for an important contribution to science or management, a notable career, and superior service in administration or in the execution of duties.

**Note: this article was published by the US Geological Survey, released on February 18, 2010. Visit the USGS Newsroom for more information. You can also subscribe to USGS News Releases via their electronic mailing list or RSS feed.

Friday, January 29, 2010

USGS and Partners to Help Scientists Deal with Data Deluge

A new global data access program will help scientists deal with the ever-increasing amount of information they must access to understand Earth’s living and nonliving systems.

The program, called DataONE, is a global data access and preservation network created by experts at the ’s National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII), in partnership with many universities. DataONE is the result of a recent 5-year, $20 million award through the National Science Foundation. ONE is short for Observation Network for Earth.

DataONE is committed to ensuring the preservation and access to Earth-observation data across scientific disciplines to make new discoveries that improve life, said Mike Frame, a bioinformatics expert leading the USGS efforts along with Vivian Hutchison, also of the NBII.

Frame noted that the NBII offers DataONE partners expertise in biological informatics: the convergence of the biological sciences, information science and computer technologies.

“We’ve been developing standards and tools for using and integrating data for more than a decade,” said Frame. “With DataONE, our involvement will go beyond the focus on biological resources to include the necessary infrastructure and integration of data needed to confront broader environmental challenges.”

Much work will center on learning how scientists from many areas of study gather and label their data, then identify and develop tools, including software, that allow scientists to more easily access, interpret and use each other’s research.

Those benefiting from DataONE will include scientists, land-managers, policy makers, students, educators and the public. Most importantly, said Frame, DataONE is not an end in itself but a means to serve a broader range of science domains both directly and through interoperability with the DataONE distributed network.

The NBII Program is contributing thousands of metadata and datasets to DataONE through the NBII Metadata Clearinghouse. Through the clearinghouse, users can search detailed descriptions (metadata) of hundreds of different biological datasets and information products. These records describing biological datasets will be combined with metadata contributions from other partners in the DataONE system to provide a foundation for users to identify, access, and analyze data collected across multiple disciplines.

“Even though these datasets were collected to answer specific scientific questions at the time of data development,” said Hutchison, “there may be broader uses for the data, such as for complex analysis needed in climate change research.”

The USGS is the only federal agency participating in this grant. DataONE is led by the University of New Mexico and includes partner organizations across the United States, Europe, Africa, South America, Asia and Australia. It also includes experts from library, computer and environmental sciences to bridge these fields and to develop an infrastructure to serve science and the public at large for decades to come.

About the NBII

A major collaborator in the DataONE project, the NBII is a broad, collaborative program to provide increased access to data and information on the nation's biological resources. Coordinated by the USGS, the NBII links diverse, high‑quality biological databases, information products, and analytical tools maintained by NBII partners and other contributors in government agencies, academic institutions, non‑government organizations and private industry. NBII partners and collaborators also work on new standards, tools and technologies that make it easier to find, integrate and apply biological resources information. Resource managers, scientists, educators and the general public use the NBII to answer a wide range of questions related to the management, use and conservation of U.S. biological resources.

(Photo: DataONE sponsored a kick-off meeting to launch the program (October 2009) in Albuquerque, NM)

Friday, December 18, 2009

NASA Grant Team Developing Project Plan for Work on the Appalachian Trail

Glenn Holcomb of the USGS Northeast Area and Marcia McNiff of the National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII) are participating as members of a team collaborating on the development of a Project Plan for work along the Appalachian Trail. The multi-agency team, led by principal investigator Dr. YQ Wang of the University of Rhode Island, also includes members from the National Park Service, the U.S. Forest Service, NASA, the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the State University of New York (SUNY) College of Environmental Science and Forestry (ESF), and the University of Rhode Island. The project, “A Decision Support System for Monitoring, Reporting and Forecasting the Ecological Conditions of the Appalachian National Scenic Trail,” was selected for funding by NASA’s 2008 Decision Support through Earth Science Research Results Program. On completion, data and models developed over the 4-year life of the project will be hosted on the Appalachian Trail (A.T.) MEGA-Transect Web site.

(Image: Appalachian National Scenic Trail Map [Copyright: U.S. NPS])

Central Southwest/Gulf Coast Information Node Working With State Agencies to Develop Coastal Fisheries Mapping Application

Gulf of Mexico coastal fisheries populations have tremendous value in ecological, economic, and social terms. As a result, a number of state agencies within the Central Southwest/Gulf Coast Information Node (CSWGCIN) region are involved in coastal fisheries management. Each agency collecting fisheries independent (non-harvest) data in the Gulf of Mexico Coastal Zone does so according to agency-specific mission and goals; this leads to differing sampling methodologies and database formats. While each database tells a part of the story about the state of Gulf of Mexico coastal fisheries resources, combining them into a cohesive and complete data record is a difficult task. CSWGCIN is currently working with several of the state agencies to acquire coastal fisheries monitoring data. The data will be displayed in an online mapping application so users will be able to view physical characterization data by estuary. The application will provide hydrologic information, with data available for download.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Web-enabling the Pacific Northwest Habitat Classification Systems Database

The Pacific Northwest Habitat Classification Systems database (PHaCS) is currently available as a desktop version based in Access format, which can be downloaded at no cost to interested entities across the Pacific Northwest. In 2010, the NBII's Pacific Northwest Information Node (PNWIN) will provide support to Web-enable this database to provide interactive online access. The Northwest Habitat Institute, the PNWIN partner leading this effort, has already compiled over 60 different habitat classification systems into a single database. Habitat classification systems differ greatly throughout the Pacific Northwest depending on agency, organization, or monitoring group, often complicating data-sharing and collaboration. Additionally, some classifications use similar terminology but further challenge collaboration and sharing of information because the definitions are different. The PHaCS database can help address these questions about habitat classification and the systems used in the Pacific Northwest region and will be available as a Web-based resource improving availability and efficiency for users. Eventually, California will be included in the system.

Transition of the Density Management and Riparian Buffer Study Database

In August 2009, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) met with the National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII) Partners at Oregon State University, Northwest Alliance for Computational Science and Engineering (NACSE) to discuss further enhancements to the Density Management and Riparian Buffer Study (DMS) site that was originally developed with support from the NBII Program. The data, publications, and spatial information will be enhanced and the DMS site will fully come back online by the end of 2009. The BLM will continue using the recently developed Web entry form to enter their new publications. The DMS develops and tests options for young stand management to create and maintain late-successional forest characteristics in western Oregon. Originally launched in 2003 in collaboration with BLM as part of Pacific Northwest Information Node (PNWIN), the DMS database will transition to BLM for long-term maintenance and support.

NBII's Regional Partnerships in Support of Biodiversity Inventory in the Great Smoky Mountains

On December 10-12, 2009 the All Taxa Biodiversity Inventory (ATBI) held its annual meeting in Gatlinburg, Tennessee. This regular end of the year event brings together “scientists, volunteers, and general public to hear about year's field work results, and to celebrate our living natural resources in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park”.

Scientists and staff of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP) have teamed with the not-for-profit group Discover Life in America (DLIA) to coordinate the inventory of an estimated 100,000 species living in the park. The NBII's Southern Appalachian Information Node (SAIN) is working with the GSMNP and DLIA to help define and implement ways to disseminate the many types of data being collected, analyzed, and summarized. SAIN is providing web page hosting, development and design, as well as database assistance and coordination with other inventory & monitoring projects to ensure that users are able to interact effectively with the data and information provided.

ATBI started at the Big Thicket National Preserve, an area of rich biodiversity and the first preserve in the National Park System. The Natural Resources Department of the Big Thicket National Preserve has a wealth of biological data. Most of the data have geographic identifiers but are decentralized or are not in their correct geographic projection. Staff of the NBII Central Southwest Gulf Coast Information Node (CSWGCIN) worked with the Big Thicket to gather the various data sets describing the preserve and to organize the data into a logical structure, filling data gaps where applicable.

(Photo: Winter - Snowy Stream at the Great Smokey Mountains National Park. Photo courtesy

Friday, December 11, 2009

GBIF Integrated Publishing Toolkit for Helpdesk Experts

The United States National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII) program, in collaboration with the Global Biodiversity Information Facility (GBIF), has developed and is supporting an Integrated Publishing Toolkit (IPT) to facilitate access, discovery, and use of collections and observational data. A new training CD on the GBIF IPT has recently been published. This CD, based on materials from the Helpdesk Experts Workshop on the GBIF IPT , is a compilation of presentations, promotional materials, technical documents, videos, and online resources. The Helpdesk Experts Workshop was designed to:
"provide a selected group of technically capable people with extensive knowledge on the GBIF IPT so they can get more involved in the development and deployment of the tool, acting as a distributed helpdesk network for the benefit of their communities and regions."
The CD may be obtained by visiting the GBIF Training CDs page and clicking the link. The CDs are available in .ISO format and it is suggested on the Web site to use the image burning feature of your CD burning software to convert them into actual CDs.

About the GBIF IPT (from the IPT Web site):

"The GBIF Integrated Publishing Toolkit (IPT) is an open source, Java (TM) based web application that connects and serves three types of biodiversity data: taxon primary occurrence data, taxon checklists, and general resource metadata. The data registered in a GBIF IPT instance is connected to the GBIF distributed network and made available for public consultation and use. This tool is made freely available for both those who wish to use it to publish their data and those who wish to participate in its development, documentation, and helpdesk."

To learn more about GBIF and NBII collaborations, please visit the NBII GBIF network Web site.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Pacific Biodiversity Information Forum (PBIF) Highlights Updates to the Pacific Protected Areas Database

Created in 2003, the Pacific Protected Areas Database (PPAD) is a work in progress to document protected areas in the Pacific islands region of Oceania (Micronesia, Melanesia, and Polynesia). Final data for the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) and Kiribati are being added. FSM and Kiribati complete the Micronesian section of the database. Additionally, a new online interface has been developed and is now live. Visit the website at at

(Photo: from the PBIF website. PBIF's geographic scope includes the countries of Polynesia, Micronesia and Melanesia, as well as the Australasian countries bordering these regions.)

Climate Change, Bioenergy, and Aquatic Resources in the Southeast

The University of Tennessee's School of Information Science, has been awarded a cooperative agreement to develop content areas focused on climate change as well as bioenergy and aquatic resources (management and restoration) in the Southeast. Dr. Carol Tenopir is the Principal Investigator and with be supported by Dr. Miriam Davis. Dr. Tenopir is the Director of Research for the College of Communication and Information and the Director of the Center for Information and Communications Studies. Dr. Davis will initially focus on identifying significant research activities in the southeast related to these focus areas and assessing information needs.

Maui County Geospatial Technology Collaboration

Pacific Basin Information Node (PBIN) is working with Maui Community College (MCC) and Maui to develop a geospatial information infrastructure, based at MCC that will serve as an archive and point of dissemination for cultural, natural resource, and urban landscape spatially referenced data. The technological infrastructure and source data sets (e.g., biodiversity data, culturally significant locations, historic structures, etc.) will provide a focal point for inter-disciplinary instruction, student internships, and hands-on work experience. For more information, visit the Pacific Basin Information Node (PBIN) website.

Photo: Geographic Location of Hawaii and the U.S. Pacific Island Territories (Guam, Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and American Samoa)

Friday, November 13, 2009

What’s Protected, What’s Not: New Protected Areas Database for United States' Land Now Available

Several federal, state, and non-government agencies have combined resources and data about public landholdings to create the Protected Areas Database - United States (PAD-US).

PAD-US, released in April 2009, is a national inventory of protected lands. In addition to providing comprehensive information about public lands in the United States, this geodatabase includes information that allows it to be incorporated into the United Nations' World Protected Areas Database (WDPA), thereby aiding a new perspective on conservation efforts worldwide.

PAD-US was prepared in collaboration with the PAD-US Partnership, a public-private planning consortium comprised of federal, state, and non-governmental organizations interested in the inventory and management of protected lands.

"This effort, which was funded by the U.S. Geological Survey's Gap Analysis Program (GAP) and the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, seeks to provide the guidance and resources necessary to maintain protected lands data with greater accuracy and detail than previously possible," said John Mosesso, a USGS scientist involved with the project.
To read more of the official USGS press release, visit the USGS Newsroom.

More information on the PAD-US Partnership can be found on the Protected Areas Database website, as well as a map of the stewardship data.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

New NBII Search Engine Highlighted in The Wildlife Professional

An article appearing in the fall 2009 issue of The Wildlife Professional titled “A Search Engine Revs Up” takes a thoughtful look at the recently introduced search engine and redesigned home page of the USGS National Biological Information Infrastructure (NBII). The fall issue of this publication is a special issue offering a variety of perspectives on accessing data. The Wildlife Professional is distributed to all members of The Wildlife Society, whose members specialize in the management, conservation, and study of wildlife populations and habitats.

(Photo: cover of The Wildlife Professional Magazine)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

California Partners in Flight Study Areas Database Now Hosted by Point Reyes Bird Observatory (PRBO)

In collaboration with the University of California (UC)-Davis through the California Information Node (CAIN), the California Partners in Flight (CalPIF) Study Areas Database provides bird monitoring sites and serves as a repository for species breeding status information for the entire state. The database provides an interactive map that shows all CalPIF collaborators’ study areas contributed to date, an interactive focal species breeding status map that show all study areas and detailed information for each focal species, and habitat maps for California. Originally launched in 2005 in collaboration with UC-Davis and Point Reyes Bird Observatory (PRBO) as part of CAIN, the database has moved to PRBO for long-term maintenance and hosting.

(Image: screen shot of the California Partners in Flight Study Areas Database)