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About Our Data

The Atlantic Canada Conservation Data Centre (AC CDC) maintains linked databases that document what species occur in each Atlantic Canadian province, and the locations at which provincially-rare species are known. Species’ conservation status is assessed in collaboration with other experts and is summarized in a sub-national status rank (S-rank) for each species in each province. AC CDC maintains S-ranks for all terrestrial vertebrates, vascular plants, bryophytes (mosses and related plants), macrolichens and for many invertebrate groups. As of December 2014 our database has provincial ranks for 9,400 species and subspecific taxa, with that number set to increase significantly in 2015 as new groups are assessed. Species’ provincial S-ranks are available here.

AC CDC maintains location data for species of conservation concern (S-ranks between S1 and S3S4, in addition to species considered extirpated [SX] and historic [SH]) in a Geographic Information System (GIS) database. The 1.03 million records in our terrestrial species occurrence database include 189,000 provincially rare records compiled from hundreds of sources. Species’ occurrence records include both recent and highly precise data collected through annual AC CDC fieldwork, and information up to 150+ years old for which locations may not be known precisely. The AC CDC database of species occurrences is the only relatively comprehensive information source on where species of conservation concern are known on the landscape. Consultation with the AC CDC database is a required step in provincial and federal Environmental Impact Assessments, and our data is used hundreds of times annually in relation to development proposals, delineation of new protected areas, other government and NGO land use planning and academic research. The quality and comprehensiveness of our data improves significantly each year through new field surveys by staff and incorporation of new datasets from outside the organization.

See Fees and Usage and our Data Dictionary for more information about using out data.