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Live feeds of GSM, ICARUS and Iridium data

Movebank currently supports live feeds to

Once a subscription is started, new data are automatically imported to your study in Movebank several times a day, and you can register for e-mail notifications to keep up to date with recent locations. 

Read more about how to organize, view, and edit your study in the Data management and analysis section of this manual.

Movebank will create a Tag ID to associate with your data for each tag, but that for each animal you are tracking you will need to create an Animal ID and provide a species name and the time of deployment so that Movebank can know which portion of the tag's data represents an animal's movements. Until data are associated with an Animal ID, they are not visible by default from the Tracking Data Map. Read more here about how to create Animal IDs, define deployments, and view undeployed tag data.

Start a new feed

To start a new live feed,

  • If you haven't already, register on Movebank and create a study (or studies) to which your data will be sent.
  • Update your access permissions in the study if needed.
  • Contact your tag provider to let them know you will be setting up a feed in Movebank, and include the following information:
    • CTT, Ecotone, e-obs, Followit Wildlife, ICARUS, madebytheo, Microwave: provide your Movebank username/s and a list of tags you will want access to
    • Fleetronic, MoveTech: provide the Study ID for your study (listed in the Study Details) and and a list of tags you will want access to
    • Ornitela: provide your Movebank username/s and select tags you will want access to in their online portal.
  • Once you have confirmation that the provider has sent this information to Movebank, log in to Movebank, return to your study and select your provider under Manage Live Feeds.
  • Select New. A window will open showing a list of available Tag IDs. If you do not see any Tag IDs listed yet, it may be because Movebank has not yet received any data messages.
  • Select Add all Tags, or select individual Tag IDs and click on right arrow. The chosen Tag IDs will be listed under Selected Tags.
  • Select Save.

Your live feed manager will look like this:

When a new tag is added to the feed, a Tag ID will be automatically created in your study in Movebank and data will begin being added to your study when the first messages arrive from the provider. CTT, e-obs, Followit Wildlife, madebytheo, Microwave, and Ornitela will provide all existing data for each tag by default. For MoveTech tags, the user can choose the date from which data for each tag should be added. Older data will not automatically be transferred from Fleetronic, but can be imported as a custom tabular csv file.

Next steps

After you have started your live feed, we recommend these further steps:

  • Register to receive automatic daily or weekly e-mail notifications with updates.
  • Once your tags are deployed, add Animal IDs and link these to the Tag IDs so that Movebank will recognize the data as part of an animal track. You can do this in the Deployment Manager (easiest for a small number of tags) or by uploading a reference data file (easiest for many tags).

To make changes to an existing feed,

  • If you will be deploying additional tags, contact the provider with the required information:
    • CTT, Ecotone, e-obs, Followit Wildlife, ICARUS, madebytheo, Microwave: if needed, your Movebank username/s and a list of tags you will want access to
    • Fleetronic, MoveTech: if needed, the Study ID for your study (listed in the Study Details) and and a list of tags you will want access to
    • Ornitela: update your tag selections in their online portal.
  • Log into Movebank and go to your study page (choose Tracking Data Map from the main menu and select Studies from the tracking data menu).
  • Select your provider name from under Manage Live Feeds. You will see a summary of your feed activity.
  • To change what tags are in the feed, select Add/Remove Tags. A window will open showing a list of available Tag IDs.
  • Select Add all Tags, or select individual Tag IDs and click on right arrow or to add or remove tags from the list of Selected Tags.
  • Select Save.

Note that if you will have multiple Movebank users editing the feed, each of these users must have permission from the provider to access the data for the tags. If a user without access to tags attempts to edit the feed, the feed may stop collecting new data. You will receive a warning before making any changes that might affect the current feed.