How species concern levels are assessed for a Transect Report

Learn more about how Transect determines each species concern level

Transect's automated analyses and expert reviews consider multiple components of species location data in order to provide you with a concern level for each species. The below items provide insight regarding the data points Transect assesses and where to find these features in a Transect Report.

There are three concern levels that may be given to each species in your report:

  • Species of Concern: These are species where one or more habitat characteristics is present and where critical habitat, element occurrence, and/or primary data occur, signifying a high potential for that species to occur in or near the project.
  • May Occur: These are species where one or more habitat characteristics is present and the project is within one of the species range types, signaling that the species may occur in or near the project.
  • Not Likely to Occur: Species habitat characteristics are not present OR it is within and exclusion area OR the species is outside of a primary area if that state has primary area locations.

The following report elements contribute to the concern level assessment for each species in your report:

Locations in your AOI or buffer

Your Transect Report includes many different resolutions of species location types that intersect with your project area of interest (AOI) or buffer.

You can view location data in a Transect Report two ways:

  • Species > Locations includes a list of all of the species locations organized by type.
  • You can also view the locations organized by species in each species profile under Species > Profiles > [species name] > Data.


Locations external to your project

Species move around geographically, so species locations near your AOI are just as important as the data on your AOI. Your Transect Report also includes species locations (other than Range - USFWS ECOS) that are within three (3) miles of your project. We provide these external data to offer helpful context beyond the bounds of your project.

Locations external to your project are denoted by the word "External" in the species data table. A distance to the location is also listed. Click on the data row and pan to the report map to see an arrow that points in the direction of the location.


Availability of element occurrence data

Transect does not have element occurrence data for all states. When you see official element occurrence data listed in your report, Transect has partnered with a regulator/steward of EO data in the state where your project is located. Transect has also digitized thousands of species locations from sources like the federal register, scientific documents, state-sponsored studies, and more.

Habitat Characteristics

The Transect environmental team has assigned habitat characteristics to each species profile that let you know what characteristics are needed on or near your project for that species to occur. Numerous datasets (including waters, landcover, aerial imagery and more) are analyzed to assess whether that habitat characteristic is present on or near your project.

Habitat characteristics for each species are listed in the species profiles along with an X or check mark, signifying if that habitat characteristic is present in the AOI or not.


Primary Areas

If Transect has definitive, high-quality species range data in your AOI's state, Transect will assess if your AOI intersects those primary, known ranges of the species.  If the species primary area within a state does not intersect the AOI, then the species will be considered 'Not Likely to Occur.' Primary areas are included in the Range - Transect data.

Exclusion Areas

Exclusion areas are those areas where the species has been definitely determined as extirpated (species no longer exists in a specific region). If Transect only shows exclusion areas for a species on your AOI, then the species concern level will be downgraded to 'Not Likely to Occur'. 

Exclusion areas are denoted by the word "Exclusion" in the species data table. The data row is also green.