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Bird migration flow visualization



Weather radars can detect bird migration, but visualizing these data in an intuitive way is challenging. Inspired by and based upon "air" - an open source flow visualization of wind and air pollutants in Tokyo by Cameron Beccario - we created an interactive, online flow visualization of bird migration.


This visualization is a web application written in HTML, CSS and JS, showing bird migration as an animated flow, superimposed on a map and progressing through time. Controls at the top of the visualization allow the user to start and stop this progression, manually navigate through time intervals, select a specific date and time, as well as toggle between two altitude bands. The main difference with "air" is the functionality to progress and navigate through time. The visualization has been applied on two case studies: Netherlands and Belgium and Northeastern United States, but it can support other case studies as well (see "Installation"). For more information, see Shamoun-Baranes et al. 2016 (in press).


Installation to add your own case study

  1. Clone this repo
  2. Start a HTTP server (e.g. using Python -m http.server 8000)
  3. Go to viz/2 and duplicate the directory nl-be as my-study
  4. Provide a basemap as a topojson file (example)
  5. Provide radar locations as a geojson file (example)
  6. Provide aggregated bird migration altitude profiles as a csv file (example)
  7. Reference these files and set some settings in the variable settings at the bottom of index.html
  8. Go to http://localhost:8000/viz/2/my-study to see your case study visualized.


Developed by LifeWatch INBO:

Guidance provided by Judy Shamoun-Baranes (UvA), Hans van Gasteren (UvA), Hidde Leijnse (KNMI) and Willem Bouten (UvA).


This visualization was mainly created over the course of two hackathons (June 2014 and June 2015) hosted by the University of Amsterdam and funded as short term scientific missions by COST for the European Network for the Radar Surveillance of Animal Movement (ENRAM).


The MIT License (LICENSE)