IMIS | Flanders Marine Institute

Flanders Marine Institute

Platform for marine research


Publications | Institutes | Persons | Datasets | Projects | Maps
[ report an error in this record ] Printer-friendly version

State of the World's Sea Turtles, The
Kot, C.Y., A. DiMatteo, E. Fujioka, B. Wallace, B. Hutchinson, J. Cleary, P. Halpin and R. Mast. 2012. The State of the World's Sea Turtles Online Database: Data provided by the SWOT Team and hosted on OBIS-SEAMAP. Oceanic Society, Conservation International, IUCN Marine Turtle Specialist Group (MTSG), and Marine Geospatial Ecology Lab, Duke University.

Access data

Other online datasets:
Availability: The data can be made available upon request, please use contact information.

SWOT's interactive map, hosted by OBIS-SEAMAP, represents the individual work of hundreds of SWOT Team members around the world. To date, it is the most comprehensive global sea turtle nesting database in existence, encompassing data aggregated for all seven species. In addition to collating global nesting abundance and distribution information, SWOT is also working to include other types of information, including in-water distributions, satellite telemetry tracking data, and genetic stock delineations. Furthermore, SWOT has determined recommendations for monitoring effort schemes that will allow for long-term nesting abundance and trend estimates for regional and global populations of sea turtle species. With these advances, SWOT continues to expand its role as a global clearinghouse for sea turtle data and monitoring. more

SWOT - the State of the World's Sea Turtles - is a partnership led by the Sea Turtle Flagship Program at the Oceanic Society (OS), Conservation International (CI), IUCN Marine Turtle Specialist Group (MTSG), and supported by the Marine Geospatial Ecology Lab (MGEL) at Duke University. However, the lifeblood of the effort is the network of more than 550 people and projects that contribute data to the SWOT database, the only comprehensive, global database of sea turtle nesting sites. The SWOT team has completed seven years of data collection including the global nesting locations of all seven marine turtle species: green, leatherback, loggerhead, hawksbill, flatback, olive and Kemp's ridley. SWOT now collects data for all species in its annual data collection. In addition to collating nesting abundance and distribution information for all species, SWOT now hosts data compiled by the MTSG Burning Issues Working Group that includes Regional Management Units for all seven marine turtle species, and distributions for all available georeferenced mtDNA and nDNA stocks. These files can be viewed here and downloaded for analyses once the Terms of Use are agreed upon. Furthermore, SWOT supports recommended monitoring effort schemes that will allow for comparison of long-term nesting abundance and trend estimates for regional and global populations of sea turtle species. These advances will solidify SWOT as the premier global monitoring system for sea turtles. Information on Minimum Data Standards are available online. The current SWOT database contains sea turtle nesting records from over 130 countries all over the world. This online tool, hosted by OBIS-SEAMAP, builds on previous work initiated and supported by the WIDECAST organization as well as data from several other regional sea turtle organizations. Records coming from projects that are part of a regional organization are flagged as such. The WIDECAST Atlas can still be accessed as a stand-alone application. New data from the WIDECAST network are added to the SWOT database annually. Records in the SWOT database are reported in several format to remain flexible for individual data contributors. When possible, exact counts of nesting females, clutches, or crawls are reported, however binned values are given for some sites where no exact estimates were available. Region- and species-specific conversion factors are used to convert among count types for display purposes only. This ensures that no nesting sites are dropped from the display when viewing the data using different types of counts. The exact converted values themselves are not displayed, so users should refer to the individual data records to view the original counts reported. When all species are displayed, colony size is used to color the points with the color white representing unquantified sites. The most recent record for the species nesting in the greatest abundance at that site is used to determine the color. Nesting sites containing multiple species are represented with a circle. SWOT reports and non-interactive maps (originally published in the SWOT reports) are available online. For any questions about the database, the SWOT project, contributions or data access issues, please contact the data provider. Inquiries can also be made as to the availability of data for use in research projects. The SWOT Scientific Advisory Board will release nest location data for use in projects that meet our review requirements; however, individual data provider permissions will need to be acquired by any parties wishing to utilize abundance data. The SWOT and OBIS-SEAMAP Teams collect nesting data annually and the dataset presented here is a subset of the SWOT database aggregated by nesting site, species, and year. The count field represents the female count and may be estimated from clutch or crawl counts. This dataset may not reflect the most up-to-date version of the SWOT database. Please see the interactive SWOT map for the latest updates and information here.

Biology > Reptiles
Marine, World Ocean, Caretta caretta (Linnaeus, 1758), Chelonia mydas (Linnaeus, 1758), Dermochelys coriacea (Vandelli, 1761), Eretmochelys imbricata (Linnaeus, 1766), Lepidochelys kempii (Garman, 1880), Lepidochelys olivacea (Eschscholtz, 1829)

Geographical coverage
World Ocean

Temporal coverage
1 January 1930 - 1 January 2011

Taxonomic coverage
Caretta caretta (Linnaeus, 1758) [WoRMS]
Chelonia mydas (Linnaeus, 1758) [WoRMS]
Dermochelys coriacea (Vandelli, 1761) [WoRMS]
Eretmochelys imbricata (Linnaeus, 1766) [WoRMS]
Lepidochelys kempii (Garman, 1880) [WoRMS]
Lepidochelys olivacea (Eschscholtz, 1829) [WoRMS]

Oceanic Society, more

Related datasets
Published in:
OBIS-SEAMAP: Spatial Ecological Analysis of Megavertebrate Populations, more

Dataset status: In Progress
Data type: Data
Data origin: Data collection
Metadatarecord created: 2012-11-27
Information last updated: 2016-06-30
All data in IMIS is subject to the VLIZ privacy policy