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NMFS Office Of Protected Resources, 2024: Leatherback Sea Turtle,

Item Identification

Title: Leatherback Sea Turtle
Publication Date: 2005-07-12

Critical habitat in the Caribbean Sea area includes the waters adjacent to Sandy Point, St. Croix from the 100 fathom curve shoreward to the level of mean high tide.Critical habitat in the Pacific Ocean areas includes marine waters to a depth of 80 meters from the ocean surface and is delineated along the shoreline at the line of extreme low water, except in the case of estuaries and bays where COLREGS lines (defined at 33 CFR part 80) are used as the shoreward boundary. The seaward boundary of the nearshore Washington/Oregon area (from Cape Flattery south to Cape Blanco) is defined along the 2,000 meter isobath. The seaward boundary of the nearshore California area (from Point Arena south to Point Arguello) is defined along the 3,000 meter isobath.


These data represent critical habitat designated (March 23, 1979, 44 FR 17710) and revised (January 26, 2012, 77 FR 4170) under the Endangered Species Act for the leatherback sea turtle.


Theme Keywords

Thesaurus Keyword
ISO 19115 Topic Category
ISO 19115 Topic Category
ISO 19115 Topic Category
ISO 19115 Topic Category
None critical habitat
None leatherback sea turtle

Spatial Keywords

Thesaurus Keyword
None California
None Caribbean Sea
None Oregon
None Pacific Ocean
None Sandy Point
None St. Croix
None U.S. Virgin Islands
None Washington

Physical Location

City: St Petersburg
State/Province: FL

Data Set Information

Data Set Scope Code: Data Set
Maintenance Frequency: As Needed
Data Presentation Form: Map (digital)
Data Set Credit: CREDIT: National Marine Fisheries Service, Southeast Region and West Coast Region ORIGINATORS: Southeast Region, National Marine Fisheries Service ; Office of Protected Resources, National Marine Fisheries Service;

Support Roles

Data Steward

CC ID: 1082529
Date Effective From: 2022-04-14
Date Effective To:
Contact (Person): Molineaux, Jonathan
Address: 1315 East West Hwy
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Email Address:
Phone: 301-427-8440

Metadata Contact

CC ID: 1082530
Date Effective From: 2022-04-14
Date Effective To:
Contact (Person): Molineaux, Jonathan
Address: 1315 East West Hwy
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Email Address:
Phone: 301-427-8440


Currentness Reference: Publication Date

Extent Group 1

Extent Description:

ground condition

Extent Group 1 / Geographic Area 1

CC ID: 1082533
W° Bound: -126.406934
E° Bound: -64.832997
N° Bound: 48.506112
S° Bound: 17.630262

Extent Group 1 / Time Frame 1

CC ID: 1082532
Time Frame Type: Discrete
Start: 1979-03-23 00:00:00+0000

ground condition

Spatial Information

Reference Systems

Reference System 1

CC ID: 1082526

Coordinate Reference System

CRS Type: Geographic 2D
EPSG Code: EPSG:4326
EPSG Name: WGS 84
See Full Coordinate Reference System Information

Access Information

Security Class: Unclassified
Data Use Constraints:

These data are not the official legal definition of critical habitat. The Code of Federal Regulations (50 CFR 226.207) is the source for the legal definition of the critical habitat designation.

Distribution Information

Distribution 1

CC ID: 1082534
Download URL:

Data access URL

File Type (Deprecated): File Geodatabase Feature Class
Distribution Format: ESRI File Geodatabase

Technical Environment


Version 6.2 (Build 9200) ; Esri ArcGIS

Data Quality

Completeness Report:

Clarifications only apply to this feature class.

Military areas ineligible for designation (qualifying INRMP): none

Military areas excluded due to national security impacts: none

Indian lands excluded: none

Economic exclusions: none

Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) exclusions: none

Unoccupied areas designated: none

Federal Register final rule page:

January 26, 2012, 77 FR 41922021-05-26T00:00:00Endangered Species Act critical habitat spatial data clarifications


Process Steps

Process Step 1

CC ID: 1082521

Detailed shoreline for St. Croix from NOAA digital vector chart was created, then the 100 fathom curve was created by conducting heads-up digitizing of the contour from NOAA chart 25641_1 using ESRI's ArcGIS software.

The accuracy of this data set is dependent upon the accuracy of the shoreline and bathymetric data used in the creation process.

Process Date/Time: 2005-07-12 00:00:00

Process Step 2

CC ID: 1082522

Land area was erased from the buffer area using ET Geowizards. The source of land area used to erase was from the NCCOS project for coral and seafloor mapping.

Process Date/Time: 2006-03-21 00:00:00

Process Step 3

CC ID: 1082523

Data created for Pacific Ocean 2012.

Polygons mapped to add critical habitat for leatherback sea turtles along the west coast (Washington, Oregon, California).

Process Date/Time: 2012-01-26 00:00:00

Process Step 4

CC ID: 1082524

Merged 2 datasets.

During standardization, geometry was not edited for the Caribbean Sea polygon. Geometry was edited for the Pacific Ocean polygons. Attributes were edited. Metadata was edited and populated using the final rule/CFR and the sources: SeaTurtleLeatherback_19790323 (GCS_WGS_84 wkid 4326) and Final_LeatherbackCH.shp (NAD_1983_California_Teale_Albers).

Geoprocessing steps:

- Projected 2012 Pacific Ocean version Final_LeatherbackCH.shp (NAD_1983_California_Teale_Albers) to WGS84.

- Exploded multipart polygon to populate separate attributes for WA/OR polygon and CA polygon.

- Deleted 2 very tiny polygons that appeared after explosion, only 2 large polygons remained.

- Merged with Caribbean Sea polygon (SeaTurtleLeatherback_19790323) to create the standardized feature class SeaTurtleLeatherback_20120126 (GCS_WGS_84 wkid 4326) using the National Critical Habitat Geodatabase processing protocol.

- Migrated fields: none

- Dropped fields: FID, NAME, SHAPE_Leng, SHAPE_Area

- Caribbean Sea feature class deprecated (SeaTurtleLeatherback_19790323_archived).

**Data history - for reference**

See final rule map Figure 1 - Geographical Areas Occupied by the species (January 26, 2012, 77 FR 4188).

The CFR text describes areas 1 and 7, but the CFR map does not show those boundaries.

CFR text (i) matches area 1, (ii) matches area 7.

CFR map shows areas 1 and 7 combined into a single polygon (i.e., the 200 meter isobath no longer existed, only the 3,000 meter isobath existed).

Process Date/Time: 2021-04-26 00:00:00

Child Items

Rubric scores updated every 15m

Rubric Score Type Title
Entity SeaTurtleLeatherback_20120126

Catalog Details

Catalog Item ID: 65327
GUID: gov.noaa.nmfs.inport:65327
Metadata Record Created By: Jonathan Molineaux
Metadata Record Created: 2021-08-31 20:55+0000
Metadata Record Last Modified By: SysAdmin InPortAdmin
Metadata Record Last Modified: 2023-10-17 16:12+0000
Metadata Record Published: 2022-04-02
Owner Org: OPR
Metadata Publication Status: Published Externally
Do Not Publish?: N
Metadata Last Review Date: 2022-04-02
Metadata Review Frequency: 1 Year
Metadata Next Review Date: 2023-04-02