CASE STUDY For more information, please contact: Christine Simmons LFPR Public Relations – www.lfpr.com (for Avenza) 949.502-6200 ext. 320 [email protected]
Conserving Tasmania’s Disappearing Species With Avenza’s PDF Maps app Digital Map App Helps to Keep Tasmanian Land Conservancy Sustainable for Rare and Endangered Species in Australia Globally, there are well over 41,000 species listed as endangered. The Tasmanian devil and the Tasmanian wedge-tailed eagle -- both of which are not found anywhere else in the world outside of zoos -- share the unfortunate designation of ‘endangered’ as well. Located on the island of Tasmania, which is the southern-most state of Australia, both species share a unique biodiversity that supports a mix of habitats for endangered plants such as the Grassland Paper-daisy, endemic species like the Ptunarra brown butterfly, and other rare and endangered marsupials and birds distinct to Tasmania. With declining numbers of certain flora and fauna, groups such as the Tasmanian Land Conservancy (TLC) are working to ensure a sustainable future for a threatened and unique ecosystem. Starting with $50 in the bank and a few committed staff members in 2001, the TLC set out to protect a unique ecoregion that had fallen to outside threats like deforestation, logging, and mining over the decades. By using science and an entrepreneurial approach to conservation, their efforts continue to protect land for biodiversity by: 1) creating permanent reserves via purchasing or covenanting and on-selling properties through its revolving fund and 2) working with private landowners to protect ecological values on their own properties. Sixteen year later, TLC now manages more than 77,000 acres through covenanting partnerships, which protects more than two percent of Tasmania’s privately owned land and secures habitat for all of Tasmania’s 33 species of land mammals and many bird species as well.
With such massive tracts of lands to survey, TLC was using handheld GPS devices. However, because of issues such as poor screen resolution and difficulties in uploading tailored maps, the group found it cumbersome and problematic when information about data points weren’t adequately being recorded. Data was being collected but it was often lost when transferring it off the device. Notepads were used as a backup to write details, but working in inclement weather frequently resulted in unreadable, soggy notes. Returning from the field, staff would then have to painstakingly manually input the detailed information based from memory or handwritten reports. Although the group did the best with what they had, the results were maps with incomplete information, with staff having to recollect data or rely on memory when out in the field. It was then that a staff member suggested Avenza’s PDF
Since using Avenza’s PDF Maps app didn’t require the TLC to purchase any additional equipment, staff members with an iOS or Android smartphone or tablet could download the app, load a map of the area being surveyed and easily input notes directly onto the digital map. “Being able to record and display detailed information about our reserves, on a device that we already carry with us, has revolutionized the way we collect and use data. It now takes only seconds to record detailed information about each site, and so our staff are happy to do this all the time, even if it’s only a minor piece of information,” said Denna Kingdom, reserves manager, Tasmanian Land Conservancy. “We now have standardized data collection and everything we collect is used, because it is simple and fast to access. After emailing the data to the relevant staff member, all that needs to be done is collate the data from different devices, and upload it to our mapping software when we’re back in the office.” In addition, the ability to view TLC’s own tailored maps on a handheld device has significantly increased efficiency. Staff members previously used other map apps but being in an area with no internet coverage, T