WildFinder Maps Wildlife with ArcWeb Services

World Wildlife Fund Launches New Search Tool

September 12, 2005 -- Redlands, California—ESRI, the leading developer of geographic information system (GIS) technology, announces that World Wildlife Fund (WWF) is using ESRI ArcWeb Services to operate WildFinder, its new information site on the Web. The site gives students, nature enthusiasts, and scientists a powerful search tool to find and map WWF information on more than 30,000 species of wildlife worldwide. ESRI business partner Blue Raster managed the project to create WildFinder and built the customized interface that accesses the WWF database.

“The ArcWeb Services on-demand mapping resources allowed us to focus on the user experience instead of on physical architecture and data management to create a compelling Web tool,” said Blue Raster vice president Michael Lippmann. He explained that ArcWeb Services offer clients Web access to the newest ESRI maps; provide map and data storage; and eliminate the overhead of paying for equipment, large datasets, and technical personnel to manage them. “The on-demand model allows WWF to pay per transaction so its money goes further and the organization can concentrate on its interest, which is preserving wildlife,” added Lippmann.

“WildFinder has become one of the most visited parts of the WWF Web site,” said WWF GIS manager Wesley Wettengel. He explained that WWF already uses ESRI ArcGIS Desktop software for thematic mapping and assessments such as its Global 200 list of biologically diverse habitats, so it looked to ESRI for a Web site solution. “Through ArcWeb Services ESRI hosts the map data so we do not have to host it ourselves,” he said.

WWF worked with other organizations for five years to compile its Oracle database of worldwide information on more than 30,000 species. Combined with 825 identified habitat areas, the entire database contains more than 500,000 records. WildFinder visitors can type in a ZIP Code, city, country, or other location information to produce a list of animals found in a specific place. They can also search for a specific bird, mammal, reptile, or amphibian and produce global maps of its habitat range, identify its endangered status, and see links to images on the Web.

“Conservation organizations have information vital to the intelligent management of our planet, and we feel that technology companies need to continue to make special efforts to ensure it is made available to the public,” said Charles Convis, ESRI conservation program coordinator. “The information offered by WWF is exemplary in this regard.”

To use WildFinder, visit http://www.worldwildlife.org/wildfinder. For more information about Blue Raster, visit www.blueraster.com. ArcWeb Services information is available on the Web by visiting ESRI at www.esri.com/arcwebservices.

About Blue Raster

Blue Raster is based in Arlington, Virginia, and offers custom maps for Web sites, user-friendly GIS applications, and efficient Web-based systems and provides powerful solutions for compliance, analysis, scheduling, and environmental cleanup. Blue Raster can be found on the Web at www.blueraster.com.

Press Information:
Susan M. Harp, ESRI
Tel.: 909-793-2853, extension 1-2860
E-mail (press only): Email Contact
General Information: Email Contact

Review Article
  • October 09, 2008
    Reviewed by 'Bar'
    A great step in the right direction: by allowing people who would otherwise not have access to facts and figures on creatures they genuinely have concern for, this service can help heighten awareness of just how critical an endangered species might be as opposed to waiting to hear sporadic news in the National Geographis or somesuch publicaton.

      One person found this review helpful.

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