Field Manual: Matching sharks

This topic describes how to allocate matched and unmatched encounters as marked individuals (i.e., distinct sharks).

Creating a New Shark

If an approved encounter has a properly-oriented, left-side spot pattern extracted and added to the database, and if the spot pattern scan and visual inspection of the encounter photos do not produce a match to an existing shark, the encounter can be allocated as a new shark. This allocation is a first “mark” of the animal. Future sightings are considered “recaptures”.


Figure 1. A perfectly-oriented left-side pattern required for new shark identification.

Does your left-side pattern look like Figure 1? Notice that the:

  • top of the pattern area is perfectly horizontal
  • all spots in the pattern region are selected
  • the photographer was perpendicular to the patterning area

If your processed image does not look like this (or a slight variation of it), do not allocate it as a new shark. Creating new sharks with suboptimal extracted patterns lowers their potential for reidentification through pattern matching (Modified Groth and I3S) in the future.

To create a new shark from an encounter:

1. Login to the Library through a web browser if you have not done so already.
2. Go to the approved and unassigned encounter that you want to create a new shark from.
3. Click Edit next to the Assigned to Shark field at the top of the encounter.
4. In the Create New Shark field that appears in the blue Action/Edit bar on the left, type a new name for the shark. The name of the shark should conform to the series code assigned to you in the Library. For example, sharks first identified at Ningaloo Reef are assigned names according to the format ‘A-XXX’. For example, ‘A-011’ is the eleventh shark identified in the Library at Ningaloo Reef.
5. Click Create. The Library will inform you of the success or failure of its efforts to allocate this encounter as a new shark. When you create a new shark, the submitter of the encounter is automatically informed via email of the updated status of their encounter as a newly identified shark in the Library.

Note: Once an encounter is allocated to a shark in the Library, new spot data cannot be submitted for it unless it is removed from the shark to which it belongs. This limitation is designed to preserve spot data used to justify a match and to protect that spot data from accidental overwriting.

Adding an Encounter to an Existing Shark

If a spot pattern scan or visual analysis shows that a new encounter is a match to a shark already identified in the Library, you can assign the encounter to the shark. This assignment represents a “recapture” of that animal. To assign an encounter to a shark:

1. Log into Wildbook through a web browser if you have not done so already. 2. Go to the approved and unassigned encounter that you want to add to a shark. 3. Click Edit next to the Assigned to Shark field at the top of the encounter. 4. In the Add to Shark field that appears in the blue Action/Edit bar on the left, type the name of the existing shark to add the encounter to. 5. In the Matched By field, select:

  • Pattern match ── for encounter matches made with the assistance of extracted spot patterns and database scans
  • Visual inspection ── for encounter matches made from “by eye” visual comparison only

6. Click Add. A message confirming success or failure will appear in your browser. If successful, all submitters and photographers of the shark’s new encounter and its previous encounters are informed of the re-sight of this shark via email.

Note: Once an encounter is assigned to a shark in the Library, new spot data cannot be submitted for it unless it is removed from the shark to which it belongs. This limitation is designed to preserve spot data used to justify a match and to protect that spot data from accidental overwriting.

Next: Searching through the Library
Previous: Interpreting pattern match results

 
identifying_sharks.txt · Last modified: 2013/10/22 21:24 by webadmin     Back to top