How do I use the iSpot maps and filters?

To access a map of iSpot observations click here or choose "Map of observations" from the Observations menu near the top of each iSpot page.
The map page contains some powerful tools for filtering observations in all kinds of ways.
Note that this map is in testing phase and we'd like your feedback on any problems, and tips on how to use it. Please add comments to the Forum thread that has been started for this purpose.

The maps will be in this test version for the next few months, and when we next update the map process we'll do our best to incorporate as many fixes and suggestions as we can.

How to use the map and filters:

  • When you first go to the map page, it is set by default to show only the most recent 100 observations. (This is to prevent the iSpot database being overloaded with requests for data each time the map page is opened.) As soon as you choose one of the other filters for the data you wish to analyse yourself, then the 100 limit is removed, to be replaced by the standard 1,000 limit that applies to all the map searches (see final bullet-point below).
  • Each time you add, change or remove a filter, you need to then click on "Apply filter" before the changes take effect. This is also the case if you click on "clear all filters" - nothing happens until you also click "Apply filter".
  • If you have set up a filter that you may wish to use again in future, scroll down to find the option to "Save this filter". Next time you open up the map page you will be able to retrieve your filter from the "Your saved filters" section.
  • The map will only show the most recent 1,000 observations, so that if you are zoomed out a long way you will only see a fraction of the total number of observations available. As you zoom in, and/or apply filters, you should be able to reach a point where you are seeing all relevant observations for your search.

There is some additional help text on the map page itself, just click on the small question-mark symbols.
Back to main Help page.

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