BiodiversityGIS (BGIS) - Informing Biodiversity Action
What we do
Since the late 1990's, a number of new vegetation maps and large scale biodiversity plans have been drafted to assist with biodiversity conservation management outside of protected areas. The major challenge has been to ensure that all this information is centrally managed, and distributed as widely as possible.
The BGIS unit has become the central hub for the management and dissemination of biodiversity planning and related information. BGIS manages spatial biodiversity planning information such as the NBA terrestrial threatened ecosystem data. BGIS also disseminates biodiversity information garnered by partner organisations. These include the Fine-scale Biodiversity Plans developed by CapeNature and the Strategic Water Source Areas (SWSA) developed by the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR).
Electronic copies of maps, reports and databases are freely available on the BGIS website (http://bgis.sanbi.org). The website is designed in such a way that individuals who do not have access to stable broad-band connections may access the information via dial-up modems.
The unit also analyses data and provides specialist interpretation on the application of biodiversity data.
Where we work
BGIS is based in the Research Centre at Kirstenbosch Gardens. It disseminates various conservation plans and biodiversity-related datasets for the South African region. To ensure that these datasets are accessible, conservation plans are arranged geographically according to province.
Services and achievements
BGIS provides a number of invaluable services to the conservation sector.
The unit provides regular BGIS training courses. These courses focus on the practical applications of the new BGIS website, with a short introduction to conservation planning. For more information regarding dates for upcoming training courses, please contact Lebohang Majara.
The unit also equips decision-makers with tools to analyse the datasets, allowing them to make informed decisions.
Land Use Decision Support Tool
The Land Use Decision Support (LUDS) Tool was relaunched on 15 November 2013.
The original Land Use Decision Support (LUDS) tool was retired in December 2012. Since then the BGIS team has been working tirelessly to create a tool that mirrors the functions of the original application.
LUDS allows BGIS users the opportunity to perform a basic environmental assessment on a land parcel. To use the tool, users simply have to locate their area of interest and the system will extract and report on the most important biodiversity planning information for that area.
Municipal Biodiversity Information Index
The index allows users to locate available biodiversity datasets, and statistics for biodiversity features occurring in each municipality in South Africa. A0 pdf maps depicting the various biodiversity features occurring within each municipality are also available for download.
Who we are:
The BGIS team members are:
- Selwyn Willoughby (Director)
- Martin Cocks (Web developer)
- Sediqa Khatieb (BGIS Project Manager)
- Fhatani Ranwashe (GIS intern)
Tel: +27 21 799 8738
Postal address: Biodiversity GIS, Kirstenbosch Research Centre, Private Bag X7, Claremont, 7735, South Africa