Celebrating Natural Values Atlas this World Wildlife Day


The Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania (NRE Tas) is celebrating the importance of protecting the state's natural values and our unique roles that protect wildlife and the planet on World Wildlife Day (3 March).

This year, World Wildlife Day's theme is Connecting People and Planet: Exploring Digital Innovation in Wildlife Conservation. NRE Tas' Natural Values Atlas (NVA) supports this by providing a platform for users to access and record authoritative and comprehensive information on Tasmania's natural values. It provides centralised access to species observation data to improve conservation outcomes for a range of natural values, including wildlife.

The NVA data can be generated for general species surveys, projects undertaken for scientific research, environmental planning and assessments, and other purposes to support decision-making processes undertaken by industry, community, and governments and to protect natural values in the state.

NRE Tas will be updating and modernising the NVA through the Evolution Project. The Australian Government is contributing more than $1 million to support the state's work through its Biodiversity Data Repository Project which will help Australia better track the variety of its plant and animal life.

The NVA system will be redesigned by providing a modernised interface, a more simple and efficient data entry system, removing login function for casual users, improving compatibility between the NVA and other natural values data platforms by adapting to a Creative Commons Data Licencing Framework, ensuring the system is mobile-friendly and improve reporting functionality. The updated system will be more accessible and user-friendly which will make it easier for users to extract data and access more comprehensive data.

Senior Scientist for the NVA team at the Department of Natural Resources and Environment Tasmania (NRE Tas) David Storey said helping protect wildlife in the state is just one of the benefits of the NVA Project.

“One of the primary goals of the NVA Evolution Project is to simplify the loading and querying of data which includes loading larger batches of data in a more efficient manner. One example of complex data for wildlife which will benefit significantly is Raptor Nest Data which compromises around 3,000 nest sites across Tasmania," Mr Storey said.

 “For Raptor Nest Data in the NVA all nests are individually numbered and any occupancy/breeding records for individual nests are linked to the location data for each nest in the NVA. Currently, loading nest observations in the NVA is complex as the incoming nest activity records must be either linked to the existing locations or will require the users to create a new numbered nest location which can be linked to their nest observations,"

“The updated system will simplify the data process for raptor nests as it will guide users through the process as they are loading the data. The system will also be more 'mobile-friendly' allowing users to operate the system on hand-held devices.

“The upgraded system also means it will be easier for members of the public and stakeholders to record wildlife and other natural values on the NVA.  These records can then be used to identify important species locations and hot spots to help with decision-making."

The NVA, which was launched in 2006, contains 4.1 million species observations and Taxonomic and ecological information for 50,000 species.

To report natural values or use the database, visit the NVA. Data from the NVA can also be viewed via the LIST. ​