Interactive Mapping and Visualization

Biogeographic data in the OBIS-SEAMAP database can be explored using the Advanced Search Interface, a set of advanced mapping and visualization tools. Biogeographic data are classified based on the data type and platform:

The Advanced Search allows you to find biogegraphic data that meet your taxonomic and/or spatio-temporal interests. Criteria you can set up to extract data are:
Once you set up your criteria, the occurrence data are mapped and the summaries (e.g. #records, #species etc) of the extracted data are presented. you can find:
There are two types of layers to map the extracted data:

Direct Links to Dataset / Species Page

The dataset or species page on the OBIS-SEAMAP web site can be accessed via a direct link to these pages.
All you need to know is the dataset id or species ITIS taxonomic serial number. Dataset IDs or species TSNs are found at various ways/places including non-interactive Species List or Datasets List.


While the above links take you to the interactive web page for more exploration, there are static versions of the page.

OGC Services (WMS/WFS/KML)

OBIS-SEAMAP supports OGC (Open Geospatial Consortium) web services such as WMS, WFS and KML.

Although OGC is the international standards, there are inevitably a lot of so-called vendor-specific rules on actual uses.
Most typical usage of the OBIS-SEAMAP OGC services is to request a OGC service for your species or dataset of interest.
It's a good idea to start with obtaining the capability document. The following URLs return the very basic OGC capabilities of OBIS-SEAMAP.


Looking through the capability document, you will probably wonder how to get a WMS image of a specific dataset or species.
This is where the vendor-specific parameters come to play a role.
First thing you would like to try is to add 'wms' or 'wfs' to the direct link for a species or dataset mentioned above.
For example, for Kogia breviceps (pygmy sperm whale),


Still you will have a lot of questions to make best use of the OBIS-SEAMAP OGC services. For example, how to zoom in to the extent of the dataset on a WMS image; how to add continents to a WMS image; how to limit WFS results within your study area etc.
'OBIS-SEAMAP OGC services (coming soon)' page gives you the full details.

Note that as the OBIS-SEAMAP data tend to be huge even for a particular species/dataset, you'll experience performance issues on OGC services
Therefore, it's recommended that you utilize the OGC services through the online pages rather than directly entering the service URL into your browser. The online pages are designed to deal with time-out issues inherit to browsers.