Who we are

As part of the Ocean Biodiversity Information System (OBIS), a group of investigators, led by Andrew Read and Patrick Halpin of Duke University, is building Ocean Biodiversity Information System Spatial Ecological Analysis of Megavertebrate Populations (OBIS-SEAMAP), a spatially, temporally interactive online archive for marine mammal, sea turtle, seabird and ray & shark data. This service is made possible by data sharing from contributors all over the world.

OBIS is one of the projects of Census of Marine Life.

Visit Patrick Halpin's Marine Geospatial Ecology Lab web site


OBIS-SEAMAP is aimed at augmenting our understanding of the distribution and the ecology of marine mammals, seabirds, sea turtles and rays & sharks by the following approaches:

Funding Sources

Funding for the OBIS-SEAMAP project has been provided by:

OBIS-SEAMAP Observation Data

The observation data held by OBIS-SEAMAP are collected from various data providers worldwide. They are registered into the OBIS-SEAMAP database and presented on the web site upon data providers' permission. The ownership of the data belongs to the data providers.

The use of the data is subject to the OBIS-SEAMAP Terms of Use. Please contact the data provider(s) before you use the data under "permission required" policy downloaded from OBIS-SEAMAP for any product or publication.

The front page of the OBIS-SEAMAP web site provides convenient tools to explore the data. [Browse Datasets] button on the front page allows you to quickly browse datasets by data provider. Alternatively, you can see a list of providers by clicking [Browse Contributors] button. A selection of a provider in the grid visualizes the data provided by provider on the map above. The i icon forwards you to the provider's information page. If you prefer a more static list of providers, go to Contributor list page.

[Browse Species] button shows the taxonomic tree that OBIS-SEAMAP holds data for. You can select a taxon at any rank (e.g. Mysticeti of the family rank or Megaptera novaeangliae of the species rank) to visualize the data of the taxon. If you explore more for the taxon, click the link on the scientific name.

If you would like to explore data across multiple datasets or species at a region of interest, visit Advanced Search where you can set variety of criteria to extract the data. Once you set up you criteria and visualizing settings, you can start the download processes. Those data under CC-BY, CC-BY-NC or public domain can be downloaded immediately.


(To cite OBIS-SEAMAP, please take a look at Terms of Use. Also note that individual datasets have their own citations. Please see their Dataset Page for the citation information.)

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User FAQ

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