July 15, 2011

Thanks to the hard work of over 550 dedicated people around the world, the SWOT (State of the World’s Sea Turtles) database is now one of the most comprehensive global databases of sea turtle nesting sites available; and it’s just gone live on Google Earth.  Now you are able to view this extensive database on a Google Map, or you can download a KML file to see all of the data inside of the Google Earth platform.

The interactive map is highly detailed and customizable, allowing you to filter by location, species, colony size and more.  The depth of data on the map is impressive, containing data from over 120 countries around the world. There’s even a place on the SWOT Website where you can participate by uploading information about your own turtle sightings.  

Hosted by OBIS-SEAMAP, this new tool builds on previous work initiated and supported by WIDECAST.  Now the WIDECAST Atlas and SWOT Database are displayed together, although the WIDECAST Atlas can still be accessed as a stand-alone application.

If you’re looking for more ocean conservation tools in Google Earth, you can check out these ocean biographic maps, or simply dive in and explore the ocean itself, a feature available since the release of Google Earth 5.

SWOT – The State of the World’s Sea Turtles – is a partnership led by The Sea Turtle Flagship Program at Conservation International (CI), the IUCN Marine Turtle Specialist Group (MTSG), and supported by the Marine Geospatial Ecology Lab (MGEL) at Duke University. The project has also received sponsorship from The Nature Conservancy.

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