Zoology Resources

Community Science and Data Portals

BugGuide is a website where amateurs and professionals share insect and spider observations and photos are identified by experts to confirm the records.

Butterflies and Moths of North America BAMONA is an “online effort to collect, store, and share species information and occurrence data on butterfly and moth species in North America.”

eBird is an “online database of bird observations providing scientists, researchers and amateur naturalists with real-time data about bird distribution and abundance.”

eButterfly is an “online database of butterfly observations that collects data on butterfly abundance, distribution and phenology across North America.”

Flipper Files and Shark Spotter are NYS DEC Survey 1-2-3 forms for submitting observations of sea turtles, marine mammals, and sharks. Shark Spotter also has a public data viewer.

Flukebook is an online resource that analyzes photographs of dolphin and whale flukes, dorsal fins, and scars contributed by researchers and citizen scientists alike to identify individual animals and contribute to the conservation of whale and dolphin populations.

Happywhale is an online citizen science platform where users can upload photographs of marine mammal encounters; scientists at Happywhale then process the photos using an identification system, and as each animal is spotted, users can track their movements.

iMapInvasives New York An online guide and map of the invasive species in New York. You can sign up to contribute invasive species locations and information.

iNaturalist is an online platform for biologists as well as community scientists to report biodiversity observations worldwide. Species are identified by members of the iNaturalist community and distribution maps of the observations are also available.

The Mid-Atlantic Ocean data portal is an online data repository and mapping platform that allows users to visualize oceanographic features, marine species distributions, and human uses of the marine environment.

The Northeast ocean data portal is an online tool that provides access to interactive maps of ocean ecosystems and human uses; users can view curated themed maps or create their own.

The Ocean Biodiversity Information System Spatial Ecological Analysis of Megavertebrate Populations (OBIS-SEAMAP) is an online tool that allows users to visualize observations of marine mammals, sea turtles, seabirds, sharks, and rays from around the world.

OdonataCentral is a “citizen science database concerning the distribution and abundance of Odonates including Dragonflies and Damselflies.”

Online ID Guides and Information Sources

Animal Conservation Guides In these online guides, we provide comprehensive information and scientific expertise on rare species and natural ecosystems to resource managers and other conservation partners. The conservation guides are designed to help land managers, decision-makers, planners, scientists, consultants, and the interested public better understand the rare species and natural communities that characterize New York.

All About Birds is a website to help people with identification, life history and behavior of birds.

DiscoverLife is an “interactive encyclopedia about the taxonomy, natural history, distribution, abundance & ecology of species. It includes identification guides and distribution maps” and a way to report findings.

Environmental Resource Mapper This interactive mapping application can show you the general areas where rare animals, rare plants, and rare and significant natural communities (such as forests, wetlands, and other habitat types) have been documented by the NY Natural Heritage Program. The Environmental Resource Mapper also displays locations of New York regulated freshwater wetlands and of protected streams, rivers, and lakes. These maps are intended as one source of information for landowners, land managers, citizens, local officials, and project sponsors engaged in land use decision making, conservation, or environmental assessment.

The Macaulay Library archives audio, video, and photographs for scientific research and makes their database searchable to the public. It's the most comprehensive source available for bird sounds and photos, but also includes amphibians, fishes, and mammals.

Moth Photographers Group “exists as a non-profit, self-help organization for the purpose of aiding nature photographers and others in the identification of moths. The ultimate aim of the organization is to make available on the Internet photographs of a high percentage of the moths occurring in North America.”

NatureServe Explorer An authoritative source for information on more than 70,000 plants, animals, and ecosystems of the United States and Canada. Explorer includes particularly in-depth coverage for rare and endangered species.

NY Nature Explorer is an “online tool for finding out about the animals, plants and habitats in your neighborhood or in your area of interest.”

NYS DEC List of Endangered, Threatened and Special Concern Fish and Wildlife Species of New York State NYS DEC is proposing to revise the list of endangered, threatened, and special concern species, but work had been postponed due to impacts of COVID-19. The website shows the current status of species and the species status assessments developed in support of the State Wildlife Action Plan in 2015.

Oct. 15, 2020 | Updated Dec. 23, 2020, 12:17 p.m.