NatureServe Surveyor offers data about at-risk species in the United States and Canada. Not only can you select an area within just about any state, province, or territory, but you can also select an area—e.g., an entire watershed or your own polygon—that encompasses more than one political jurisdiction. The ability to access this “multi-jurisdictional” data from one source is a key part of what makes Surveyor an invaluable tool!
NatureServe has member programs in all 50 U.S. states and areas managed by the Navajo Nation and Tennessee Valley Authority, all of Canada except Nunavut, and numerous countries in Latin America. These programs own the data in our databases; their membership in the NatureServe network allows us to aggregate and disseminate the data. With each of these programs, or “data stewards,” we have a data-sharing agreement that defines what we can reveal of the program’s data and how.
NatureServe Surveyor currently provides data for the United States and Canada in those jurisdictions and for those types of data agreed to by the data stewards, as shown in this map:
Note that some jurisdictions (e.g., Arizona, Maine) have areas within them for which data are not available. These within-state “excluded areas” represent Native American tribal lands, Department of Defense installations, or other places for which we are prohibited by the landowners from releasing any information through Surveyor (but data are available for other areas within those states). Reports for surveys that overlap spatially with any excluded areas will include a statement to that effect, and users must contact the data steward(s) or NatureServe’s custom data services team for more information.
In most cases, member programs make all data fully transparent via NatureServe Surveyor; however, in some situations we have to mask the data slightly. We do this in one of two ways: by “fuzzing” the data (i.e., enlarging the known location of the species), or by masking (not showing) the name of the species itself, which we indicate by noting that it is a “sensitive species.” We usually do this only in situations where the species is threatened by unusually high collection pressures or where there are landowner concerns or similar sensitivities.
The table below shows where we have had to implement some degree of fuzzing or masking in the jurisdictions that participate in NatureServe Surveyor; unless noted for “all records,” this typically impacts a very small portion of the program’s data.
Any Spatial Data “Fuzzing”?
Any “Sensitive Species”?
|Arizona||Yes (all records)||No|
|Minnesota||No||Yes (all records)|
|Tennessee Valley Authority||No||No|
|Virginia||Yes (all records)||No|
|Wisconson||No||Yes (all records)|