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Use the Location attribute to specify the location coordinate fields and their format in your file. To open the import options, choose Location from Map Column or from the list of required mappings.

Movebank uses the open source Java library GeoTools ( for to convert all coordinate data to the WGS84 datum. This library supports a wide variety of coordinate reference systems (CRS). The data upload currently accepts data based on the WSG84, NAD27 or NAD83 reference data and either geodetic coordinates (latitude-longitude) or Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) projection. If your data are in another format and you need help converting them, please contact us at

During data import, Movebank converts your data to latitude-longitude values. For an immediate control check the values in the preview table of How Movebank will save the data and preview the tracks on the map (select Map on the upper right).

If your coordinates are in the latitude-longitude projection, make sure the correct columns are selected and and provide the exact format. See here for the definitions of characters used by GeoTools for providing latitude-longitude formats.

Accepted formats are decimal degrees signed +/- (e.g., -11.940), decimal degrees with N/S/W/E suffix (e.g., 10.523 N), sexagesimal degrees with N/S/W/E suffix (e.g., 11°8'9.6" S) and custom formats (e.g., 10°31.3800'). The table below shows identical latitudes and longitudes in different formats as an example.

 Decimal +/-Decimal N/S/E/W suffixSexagesimal N/S/E/W suffix*
Latitude10.52310.523 N10°31'22.8" N
Longitude33.37633.376 E33°22'33.6" E
Latitude-11.13611.136 S11°8'9.6" S
Longitude-13.16213.162 W13°9'43.2" W

*The character " is interpreted as a quotation mark by the parser. To use this format, the correct syntax for the deg/min/sec format is "13°9'43.2"" W" for 13°9'43.2" W.

If you are using UTM data, make sure the correct columns are selected and specify whether they are in meters (m) or kilometers (km). Here you also need to specify the UTM zone your data refer to.

When you have entered all the information correctly, hit Save. The columns Location Lat and Location Long will be added to the table under How Movebank will save the data showing the latitude and longitude in decimal degrees. Compare these coordinates to your original file to confirm the attribute was mapped correctly. If you need to edit the mapping, select the Location Lat or Location Long column header to re-open the import options.