Of harbour porpoises and sea birds

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Of harbour porpoises and sea birds


Online maps inform about the distribution of protected species on German coasts

On behalf of the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN), con terra GmbH has developed services and applications that provide detailed information on the occurrence of harbour porpoises and 22 species of seabirds in the North and Baltic Seas. The data basis is provided by a total of around 800,000 observation points for harbour porpoises, which currently contain around 29,000 sightings. More than 1.4 million observation points with over 61,000 sightings were evaluated for sea birds. The data collected from 2001 onwards were processed in such a way that they can be used by lay people interested in nature conservation as well as by the experts of the BfN, among others, for the fulfilment of legal requirements within the framework of international agreements on the monitoring of protected marine species and habitats.

Schweinswale in Nord- und Ostsee

Technological basis

map. apps, the toolkit for the efficient creation of geo apps and solutions from con terra GmbH, is used for the applications, technological basis for data management and the services is ArcGIS from Esri. The preparation and harmonisation of the output data is carried out by means of the geodata hub FME. Data and services are registered in a data catalogue. In future, all information on the monitoring results will also be available via the German Naval Data Infrastructure (MDI-DE).

BfN Logo

Press release of the BfN:

Bonn/Vilm: Where in German seas do harbour porpoises occur? Where have most seabirds been seen in the North Sea and Baltic Sea in recent years? As of today, online maps provide comprehensive and public information about this. They are based on long-term data series collected by two research institutes on behalf of the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN). The maps show where marine mammals and 22 different species of seabirds were sighted in the years 2001 to 2015 and 2016, respectively. The underlying data can also be used as standardized geo services in geoinformation systems and combined with other data.

The complete press release (in German) of the BfN under: