ExxonMobil Fuels LandScope Upgrade
If you’ve ever marveled about the rare species or natural ecosystems around you, LandScope America—NatureServe’s flagship initiative with National Geographic—now makes it easier you learn more about these “natural neighbors.” A grant from ExxonMobil has supported improvements to LandScope’s map viewer that reveal more details from three of NatureServe’s nationwide data sets about plants and animals of conservation concern and all types of ecosystems.
Exploring an area for species of conservation concern is easy. Once you have turned on the “Plants & Animals” map theme, clicking a county or watershed with the map viewer’s “Identify” tool provides the full list of species of conservation concern. The resulting table also shows species’ scientific and common names, informal taxonomy (i.e., flowering plants, mussel, invertebrate), their NatureServe global and U.S. Endangered Species Act status and provides direct links to each species’ profile pages on NatureServe Explorer.
The new ecological systems information works in much the same way. The LandScope map viewer includes three scales of nationwide data within the “Ecosystems” map theme. Zooming in on the map gives you seamless access to increasing levels of detail. An enhanced table accessed with the “Identify” tool now displays not just the ecosystem type but also links to a “user friendly” description on LandScope as well as the full record on NatureServe Explorer.
“We’re pleased to deliver even more detailed information about biodiversity in every local community across the country,” says Lori Scott, LandScope project director and NatureServe CIO. “Features like this really go to the heart of the project’s twin goals of informing and inspiring local conservation.”
These new features will prove helpful for land trust staff, local planners, landowners, and natural resource managers, who now have split-second access to valuable information not available from any other source. And as with all the data in the LandScope map viewer, this information can be combined and overlaid with hundreds of other data layers like protected areas and state wildlife action plan priority areas.
In keeping with its commitment to advancing science, ExxonMobil has supported various NatureServe initiatives since 2001. In addition to the LandScope grant, ExxonMobil has most recently served as a key sponsor of our annual Biodiversity Without Boundaries conference.