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Woods Hole Coastal and Marine Science Center > Sea Level Rise Hazards and Decision Support > Beach-dependent Shorebirds>iplover Data Collection

Beach-dependent Shorebirds

iPlover Data Collection

Understanding and managing dynamic coastal landscapes for beach-dependent species requires biological and geological data across the range of relevant environments and habitats. These data are often challenging to acquire and often have limited focus due to resource constraints, are collected by non-specialists, or lack observational uniformity. We developed an open-source smartphone application called iPlover that standardizes the collection of biogeomorphic information at piping plover (Charadrius melodus) nest sites on coastal beaches and reduces other data acquisition challenges.

screen shot of iplover app home and input screens
Screens within the iPlover app, a smartphone application designed to collect and record landcover characteristics at piping plover nesting locations. Credit: Rob Thieler, USGS

During the piping plover breeding seasons (April – July) of 2014, 2015 and 2016, iPlover was used to collect and record landcover characteristics at 2,099 nest locations and 1,952 random points on 97 beaches and barrier islands from Maine to North Carolina. This dataset was collected in partnership with federal and state agencies, universities, and private organizations.

iplover location map

Locations of the 97 beaches and barrier islands where our partners used the iPlover app to collect and record information on landcover characteristics at piping plover nesting locations during the breeding seasons of 2014-2016. Credit: Sara Zeigler, USGS

Related Publications

Thieler, E.R., Zeigler, S.L., Winslow, L.A. , Hines, M.K., Read, J.S., Walker, J.I., 2016. Smartphone-based distributed data collection enables rapid assessment of shorebird habitat suitability. PLOS ONE. 11(11): e0164979.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0164979

Sturdivant, E.J., Thieler, E.R., Zeigler, S.L., Winslow, L.A., Hines, M.K., Read, J.S., Walker, J.I., 2016, Biogeomorphic classification and images of shorebird nesting sites on the U.S. Atlantic coast: U.S. Geological Survey data release, https://dx.doi.org/10.5066/F70V89X3.

 

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