Google just announced an expansion of its popular Google Earth application to include seabed maps and underwater imagery. This new "Google Ocean" provides a powerful new tool for sea turtle researchers.
SEATURTLE.ORG's wildlife tracking tool allows researchers to open satellite tracks in Google Earth with the click of a button. By incorporating the sea floor in to Google Earth, Google has provided an exciting new way for researchers to visualize their wildlife tracking data.
Take an 8-minute tour across the Pacific Ocean with Adelita the sea turtle.
Adelita was the first turtle ever tracked across an entire ocean basin using satellite telemetry...maybe even the first marine animal! Millions of kids shared her migration on the internet. Her migration helped to prove that loggerheads born in Japan cross the Pacific and feed in California and Mexico, before migrating back home to nest in Japan. She also reminds us that the oceans are connected and that we need to work together to protect sea turtles and their habitat.
Learn more about Adelita's Journey
The Gabon Olive Ridley Project aims to determine foraging strategies and oceanographic habitat, determine multi-species turtle hotspots, and assess the potential impact of fisheries on olive ridley sea turtles nesting in Gabon (West Africa). Animating the turtle tracks through time and overlaying them with sea surface temperature offers a glimple at the future potential of the new Google Earth as oceanogrphic layers are added and improved. Google Earth promises to be a valuable tool in visualizing how marine animals interact with their environment.
Peñasquita is an adult female hawksbill turtle being tracked as part of the Eastern Pacific Hawksbill Initiative. Essentially nothing is known of the biology, distribution, abundance, or conservation needs of the eastern Pacific hawksbill. This initiative hopes to provide critical information for local and regional conservation management plans that will ultimately determine the feasibility of the turtles' recovery in this region of the world.
To learn more about these and hundreds of other projects visit SEATURTLE.ORG's satellite tracking web sites:
Get the new Google Earth.