Data Information

The Conservation Opportunity Area Tool (COA Tool) is a web-based representation of the 2015-2025 Pennsylvania Wildlife Action Plan species accounts and information for invertebrate species for which species accounts were not developed. It includes spatial data for 523 of 664 Species of Greatest Conservation Need (SGCN) at the 10-acre hexagon planning unit scale. Data deficiencies, mainly invertebrate species, prohibited an inclusive data set.

SGCN associated habitats, conservation actions, and research and survey needs also are available in an Area of Interest Report.  

SGCN presence data have been compiled from sources considered reputable by the Pennsylvania Game Commission and Pennsylvania Fish & Boat Commission.These data will be updated either quarterly (threatened and endangered species) or annually throughout the life of the COA Tool. Other foundational data sources (e.g., habitat classification, conservation actions) will be updated as refinements become available, or as revised in the Wildlife Action Plan.

UPDATES

**It is recommended to clear your browser’s cache for the updates to be visible.**

26 AUGUST 2020

DATA:

  • New records updated as of 29 July, 2020;
  • Added 66 new records for 25 Species of Greatest Conservation Need;
  • Updated 99 existing records for 35 Species of Greatest Conservation Need;
  • Added a “Focal Areas” layer group;
  • Added ruffed grouse, golden-winged warbler, and cerulean warbler focal areas into the “Focal Areas” layer group;
  • Added Streamside Forest Planting Prioritization (Points and Polygons) layers by PALTA to “Focal Areas” Group.

FUNCTIONALITY:

  • HOME: Updated the Quick Start Instructions;
  • MAP: Layer Group > Species of Greatest Conservation Need Range Maps have ‘Occurrence’ as an attribute. ‘Known’ or ‘Likely’ is now indicated for each Species of Greatest Conservation Need, as available;
  • STATEWIDE SEARCH: ‘Occurrence’ is now an attribute in the search results table and Adobe® PDF report. The Adobe® PDF report designates “known” Species of Greatest Conservation Need occurrences in bold text. Species of Greatest Conservation Need “likely” to occur are not in bold text.

DESIGN:

  • MAP: Refined layer naming convention
  • MAP: Species in the Area of Interest report now hyperlinked to Wildlife Action Plan Species Accounts for each SGCN.
Species Included and Data Age

For a list of all SGCN in the COA Tool as of 29 July 2020, data sources used, and minimum/maximum data age, click here.

Data Sources and Update Schedules
Sensitive and Non-sensitive Species

Contact: Christopher Tracey, Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program, ctracey@paconserve.org

  Last Updated Update Frequency
Sensitive Species (Biotics Database) October 2019 Quarterly
Non-sensitive Species (various sources, see below) October 2019 Annually
Birds

Contact: Pennsylvania Game Commission, PGCSWAP@pa.gov

  Last Updated Update Frequency
Second Atlas of Breeding Birds in Pennsylvania
(Wilson et al. 2012)
2009 20 years
eBird (Cornell Lab of Ornithology) October 2019 Annually
Pennsylvania Game Commission bird surveys October 2019 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually
Contractor surveys December 2018 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually

SPECIES DISTRIBUTION MODELS (Wilson et. al. 2012) supplemented location data for several species, including:

  • Wood Thrush (Hylocichla mustelina)
  • Kentucky Warbler (Oporornis formosus)
  • American Black Duck (Anas rubripes)
  • Northern Goshawk (Accipiter gentilis)
  • American Kestrel (Falco sparverius)
  • Ruffed Grouse (Bonasa umbellus)
  • Virginia Rail (Rallus limicola)
  • Sora (Porzana carolina)
  • American Woodcock (Scolopax minor)
  • Eastern Whip-poor-will (Caprimulgus vociferous)
  • Red-headed Woodpecker (Melanerpes erythrocephalus)
  • Willow Flycatcher (Empidonax traillii)
  • Purple Martin (Progne subis)
  • Bank Swallow (Riparia riparia)
  • Brown Creeper (Certhia Americana)
  • Winter Wren (Troglodytes troglodytes)
  • Marsh Wren (Cistothorus palustris)
  • Swainson's Thrush (Catharus ustulatus)
  • Gray Catbird (Dumetella carolinensis)
  • Blue-winged Warbler (Vermivora pinus)
  • Golden-winged Warbler (Vermivora chrysoptera)
  • Nashville Warbler (Vermivora ruficapilla)
  • Black-throated Green Warbler (Setophaga virens)
  • Prairie Warbler (Dendroica discolor)
  • Northern Waterthrush (Parkesia noveboracensis)
  • Louisiana Waterthrush (Parkesia motacilla)
  • Canada Warbler (Cardellina canadensis)
  • Yellow-breasted Chat (Icteria virens)
  • Scarlet Tanager (Piranga olivacea)
  • Field Sparrow (Spizella pusilla)
  • Vesper Sparrow (Pooecetes gramineus)
  • Savannah Sparrow (Passerculus sandwichensis)
  • Grasshopper Sparrow (Ammodramus savannarum)
  • Henslow's Sparrow (Centronyx henslowii)
  • White-throated Sparrow (Zonotrichia albicollis)
  • Bobolink (Dolichonyx oryzivorus)
  • Eastern Meadowlark (Sturnella magna)

The models will be updated as sufficient additional information becomes available. In the Area of Interest report, the highest possible occurrence category based upon model results is 'likely'.

Mammals

Contact: Pennsylvania Game Commission, PGCSWAP@pa.gov

  Last Updated Update Frequency
Pennsylvania Game Commission mammal surveys December 2018 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually
Contractor surveys December 2018 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually
Reptiles & Amphibians

Contact: Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, RA-FBSWAP@pa.gov

  Last Updated Update Frequency
Pennsylvania Amphibian and Reptile Survey (PARS) January 2019 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually
Fishes

Contact: Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, RA-FBSWAP@pa.gov

  Last Updated Update Frequency
Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission surveys December 2018 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually
Invertebrates

Contacts: Aquatic - Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission, RA-FBSWAP@pa.gov; Terrestrial - Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program, bleppo@paconserve.org

  Last Updated Update Frequency
Aquatic    
Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission surveys December 2018 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually
Terrestrial    
Xerces Society December 2018 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually
Butterflies and Moths of North America (BAMONA) October 2019 Sensitive Species - quarterly; Others - annually

SPECIES DISTRIBUTION MODELS (C. Tracey, pers. comm.) supplemented location data for several species, including:

  • Arctic Skipper (Carterocephalus palaemon)
  • Long Dash (Polites mystic)
  • Black Dash (Euphyes conspicua)
  • Mulberry Wing (Poanes massasoit)
  • Broad-winged Skipper (Poanes viator viator)
  • Dion Skipper (Euphyes dion)
  • Two-Spotted Skipper (Euphyes bimacula)
  • Bronze Copper (Lycaena hyllus)
  • Bog Copper (Lycaena epixanthe)
  • Silver-bordered Fritillary (Boloria selene)
  • Harris’ Checkerspot (Chlosyne harrisii)
  • Eyed Brown (Satyrodes eurydice)

The models will be updated as sufficient additional information becomes available. In the Area of Interest report, the highest possible occurrence category based upon model results is 'likely'.

How To Submit Data

Tool users are welcome to submit species data to be evaluated for inclusion in the COA Tool. The process involves free, widely-used citizen science databases or submissions directly to the Pennsylvania Natural Heritage Program (note: please refer to the comprehensive list of Species of Greatest Conservation Need before submitting data). Submitted data are subject to federal and state sensitive species protections, as applicable, and rigorous review and validation.

Freely-available citizen science databases include:


Page last updated: 26 August, 2020