The Mammal Networked Information System

Georeferencing Steps

Following is a list of the steps to be followed to georeference localities from the MaNIS collaborative gazetteer. By following these steps, all of the collaborators will benefit from the consistency in methodology.

Step One - Read Guidelines
Read and understand the Georeferencing Guidelines document and the Manual for the MaNIS Georeferencing Calculator.

Step Two - Browse Checklist
Look at the MaNIS Georeferencing Checklist to determine which geographic areas are already being georeferenced. 

Step Three - Download Localities
Use the MaNIS Gazetteer to find and download unclaimed localities for georeferencing.

Step Four - Commit
Announce your commitment to georeference a geographic area on the MaNIS list by sending a message to MAMMAL-Z-NET@LISTSERV.NHM.KU.EDU.  In the message, describe the geographic area to which you have committed. It is best if you say in the message what values you put in for your query. Your commitment will be posted on the MaNIS Georeferencing Checklist.

Step Five - Import Localities
Open the downloaded locality data in Excel, Access, or any other spreadsheet or database software that can 1) import and export a tab-delimited text file, 2) preserve the column order and structure of the original file, 3) preserve the datatypes of the imported and exported files without format modifications. Dates should use four-digit years and all digits of original numeric data must be preserved. An Access97 database template into which data can be imported is provided here.

Step Six - Georeference
Follow the Georefencing Guidelines document to determine the geographic coordinates for the localities in the downloaded data. Do not georeference localities that already have coordinates. Do not change existing data, especially the LocalityID. Use the Georeferencing Calculator to determine the maximum error distance for each locality as the coordinates are determined. An explanation of the data fields in the downloaded file is given below following the enumeration of georeferencing steps. 

Step Seven - Export Finished Localities
When a downloaded set of localities is done being georeferenced. Export the complete set of data (all records with all fields and a column header row) to a tab-delimited text file. Rename the file to reflect the institution, the geographic scope of its content, and the date the file was finished. For example, a file of Peruvian localities finished by the Field Museum on Halloween would be FMNH-Peru-2001-10-31.txt. Make a backup of this file and store it in a safe place until the data have been loaded into the MaNIS Gazetteer.

Step Eight - Upload Finished Localities
Upload the finished file of georeferenced localities by anonymous FTP to in the directory incoming/mvz/manis. Use your favorite FTP client to connect to Log in as anonymous, providing your email address as a password. Set the file type to text. Change to the incoming/mvz/manis directory on dlp. Transfer your file.

Step Nine - Report
When the file of finished localities has been successfully uploaded, report the name of the file and its contents by sending a message to John Wieczorek at the following address: The file will be checked for data integrity and loaded into the MaNIS Gazetteer. If there are problems with the data, John will get back to you to resolve them.

Step Ten - Repeat
After taking a deep breath and patting yourself on the back, go back to Step Two and repeat the process.

Data Fields in the Download File

The data in the download are meant to aid in the georeferencing process. An explanation of each of the fields is given below. The proliferation of seemingly redundant fields is the result of creating a gazetteer with a superset of all of the locality-related fields in use among the collaborating institutions. Not every field is used by every institution. Only the following fields will be updated in the collaborative gazetteer when the data are returned, the rest should be considered a part of the locality description, which will NOT be updated in the gazetteer. Please make additions or changes only to the following fields:

Named Place

LocalityID – a unique identifier for the locality record. IMPORTANT: DO NOT CHANGE IT!
CollectionCode – the institution that provided the locality record.
Highergeog – a concatenation of all of the geopolitical subdivision levels above specific locality.
Spec_Locality – the text of the specific locality description.
ElevationText – elevation information as descriptive text.
MinElev – the minimum elevation in an elevation range, as text.
MaxElev – the maximum elevation in an elevation range, as text.
ElevUnits – the units in which the MinELev and MaxElev were recorded.
LatText – the latitude, as text.
LongText – the longitude, as text.
TRS – Township, Range, Section information as text.
Township – Township, as an integer.
TownshipDir – the Township direction, N or S.
Range – Range, as an integer.
RangeDir – the Range direction, E or W.
TRSSection – the section in a TRS description, as an integer.
TRSPart – the section part description.
DetByAgentID – the ID of the person who made the determination. If this field is populated it means that the locality was downloaded with Lat-Long information already provided. DO NOT CHANGE THIS FIELD!
DeterminedByPerson – the name of the person who georeferenced this locality.
DeterminedDate – the date on which the georeferencing was done.
DeterminationRef – the reference used to make the Lat-Long Determination (e.g., map, software, gazetteer, etc.) The reference should be specific enough that someone else can find the same resource.
OrigCoordSystem – the original coordinate system in which the Lat-Long was recorded. Use one and only one of the following values: “decimal degrees”, “degrees minutes seconds”, “UTM”. It is only necessary to enter the Latitude and Longitude in the original coordinate system. Translations to other coordinate systems will be made in bulk when the data are returned.
Datum – the datum of the resource used to measure the coordinates. If the datum is not recorded on the resource, use “not recorded” and determine error accordingly.
DecLat – the latitude, in decimal degrees. Preserve as many digits of precision as given by the source. North is a positive real number between 0 and 90. South is a negative real number between 0 and 90.
DecLong – the longitude, in decimal degrees. Preserve as many digits of precision as given by the source. East is a positive real number between 0 and 180. West is a negative real number between 0 and 180.
LatDeg – the degrees part of Latitude, as an integer.
LatMin – the minutes part of Latitude, as an integer
LatSec – the seconds part of Latitude, as a real number.
LatDir – the Latitude direction, N or S. Necessary for original coordinates in degrees minutes seconds.
LongDeg – the degrees part of Longitude, as an integer.
LongMin – the minutes part of Longitude, as an integer
LongSec – the seconds part of Longitude, as a real number.
LongDir – the Longitude direction, E or W. Necessary for original coordinates in degrees minutes seconds.
UTMZone – the UTM zone.
UTMEW – the easting in a UTM coordinate.
UTMNS – the northing in a UTM coordinate.
MaxErrorDistance – the maximum error distance for the Lat-Long determination.
MaxErrorUnits – the units of the error distance. These should be the same as for the distance measures in the specific locality description, if possible.
LatLongRemarks – here go the assumptions and comments about the determination. It is especially important to note anything that is not covered in the georeferencing guidelines. 
CaptiveFlag – a flag to denote whether this location represents captive individuals. The default  value is zero, which means that the locality represents wild occurrences. Change this field to one if the locality is not a wild one (e.g., “San Diego Zoo”, “captive bred at Hastings”, etc.). Captive localities do not need to be georeferenced.
NoGeorefBecause – If a locality cannot be georeferenced, give the reason in this field. The most common reason not to georeference a locality is because it is in question (e.g., “Bakersfield?”).
LocalityAnnotation – use this field to make commentary about a locality itself for the edification of the institution that provided it. Institutions will use these annotations to rectify inconsistencies within the locality (e.g., “Bakersfield is not at an elevation of 6000 ft”) or between the locality and the higher geography (e.g., “Bakersfield is in Kern Co., not Inyo Co.”).
Extent – The distance from the center of the named place to the furthest extent of the named place from its center.
Named Place – The town, river, building, intersection, or other feature upon which the geographic coordinate determination is made.

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John Wieczorek, 30 Oct 2001
Rev. 24 Feb 2008, JRW
University of California, Berkeley, CA 94720, Copyright © 2001, The Regents of the University of California.