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Rare species viewer

We maintain a list of all documented MESA-listed species observations in Massachusetts. Search this map by common name, scientific name, or town to see where rare species have been observed.

Table of Contents

How to use this map

  1. Select a species from the drop-down menu in the upper left corner. All towns that the species has been observed in will be highlighted on the map. The accompanying table will also show information about the rare species, as well as the complete list of towns with their most recent observation years.
  2. Click on a town in the table to highlight it on the map.
  3. Select a town from the second drop-down menu in the upper left corner. The town will become outlined on the map and the table will show all rare species observed in that town.
  4. Click on Clear Query/Map on the bottom left of the table to clear searches and begin again.

Clicking on a column header in the table will sort by that column. Clicking again on the same column heading will reverse the sort order. Toggle between basemaps by clicking the image on the bottom right corner of the map.

This map is updated at regular intervals as new data is accepted and entered into the Natural Heritage and Endangered Species Program's database.

Most recent observation

This field represents the most recent observation of that species in a town. However, because they are rare, many MESA-listed species are difficult to detect even when they are present. Natural Heritage does not have the resources to be able to conduct methodical species surveys in each town on a regular basis. Therefore, the fact that the 'Most Recent Observation' recorded for a species may be several years old should not be interpreted as meaning that the species no longer occurs in a town. However, Natural Heritage regards records older than twenty-five years historic.

For more information about a particular species, view the list of Natural Heritage fact sheets.

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