Earlier I introduced the wish at Osa Conservation’s sea turtle program for some solution to unify data entry by volunteers during and/or after their beach patrols. In parts two and three, I presented SWOT and TREDS. In part 4, I will look at Turtle Tracker.
“Turtle Tracker is a web-based data management system for collecting and analyzing sea turtle nesting and tagging data, which can be customized to meet your specific needs. You can collect, view, and report on all of your sea turtle data, exactly how you want. The data and site are optimized to ensure the easiest and most accurate data entry for your staff and users – and it’s just as easy to find specific data too.”axeinc.com/sea-turtle-database
Turtle trackers is the only commercial database software that I found. It is produced by Axe Inc in the USA. The database needs to be installed on a webserver and then is reachable via browser on computers, tablets and smartphones. It captures the basic needs, but as with the TREDS system and all the other systems, not all data that is being collected at Osa Conservation will fit in. Then again, the producer claims that it can be adjusted to specific needs.
As with TREDS – its main competitor – users can have different roles which gives them different access rights and edit possibilities. The fact that one needs to be on-line to work with the database is a downside for those locations where there is no internet – and believe me, they exist plenty if one follows the turtles.
The screen shots that the Axe website provides feel a bit crude and outdated, which is why I think it is a system developed in the early 2000s. It has a nice map viewer that works with GPS so that one can immediately see the location of a nest. According to Osa Conservation’s current patrol manual, GPS is (in)accurate up to 6 meters on the Osa beaches, which is too much for locating the nest when one is on the beach. This inaccuracy may not be the same elsewhere in the world.
The Axe website provides no price indications.