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Sightings Map

Note regarding Archive Explorer

We recommend switching to Archive Explorer only on desktop browsers and later model mobile devices due to heavy processor and memory loads.

To access Archive Explorer, see Sightings, below.

E-mail comments and issues to

Jump to:

Map Display

Sighting Markers

Markers indicate the location of a Sighting Report.


Currently displayed map markers appear in the map legend with their associated species and sightings count.
Click the Legend box to minify or expand.


Menu tabs include Filters and Functions to manipulate the map display

Commands Tab

Measure Distance

Move one or both ends of the distance tool. The new distance is displayed in Kilometers and nautical miles in the pop-up window.

Goto Location

  1. Select Location from a list of locations on the BC and Washington State coast.
  2. Goto Location to Zoom to the location selected from the list, above.
    A ‘GoTo’ Marker indicates the location.
  3. Initial View to Zoom Out to display all sightings markers.
  4. Clear Goto Markers removes all Goto Location markers.

Query Waterways

When enabled, Click a waterway on the map to display its name.

Show All Locations

Enable to display 12,000 named locations points in coastal BC and WA State. Zoom in and Click a location point to display its name.

User Guide,  Questions + Comments

User Guide displays this document.

Questions + Comments generates an email to the WOWs support team.

Please ensure that:

Filters Tab

Filters limit the number of reports displayed on a map.


Sightings are initially mapped for an:

NOTE: We only recommend switching to Archive Explorer on desktop browsers and later model mobile devices due to heavy processor and memory loads.

Click Archive to in one of the other modes to load Archive Explorer, or
click here to launch directly into Archive Explorer

Always Zoom to Sightings:

Limit to Sightings with Media:

Check to display only sightings with photos, audio or video.


Heatmaps show the distribution and concentration of displayed sightings. The option is a valuable tool when reviewing the spatial distribution of a single species or the range of an ID’d Animal or Pod.

Note: In Archive Explorer, Heatmap is disabled if > 2,000 are displayed. Use filters, below, to limit the number of displayed sightings. For example, try these filters in Archive Explorer:

Start Date: 2016-01-01
Species: Humpback


The currently displayed Sightings Update Issue No. is shown when launched from a Sightings Update Issue.

In Archive Explorer, a drop-down list of archived Sighting Update issues is displayed. Select an Issue No. to display sightings that appeared in that issue.

Start Date + End Date

The date range of displayed sightings is initially displayed.

Set a shorter period of time using the start and end date filters.

Click Start Date to set a later start date filter to the displayed sightings. Click End Date to set an earlier end date filter.


Limit sightings to one species group or species with the selector. Currently displayed sightings species are listed.


Display sightings where animals were exhibiting a specific Behavior. Currently displayed sightings behaviors are listed.

Animal ID

Find sightings for one or more animals identified by name, ID or Pod.

Currently displayed sightings Animal IDs are listed:

Animal Tracks

Animal Tracks trace a series of ID’d Animal sightings over time.

NOTE: Animal Track  is enabled when the map displays between 1-15 identified animals, each with more than 1 sighting.

For best results:

  1. Use Species and Animal ID filters to select 1-4 identified pods or animals.
  2. Use the Start Date and End Date filters to select a short date range, such as a week or month.
  3. Click the ID’d Animal Tracks radio button.

  1. Click an Animal Track to list the Animal Sightings.

Change Track Colors

Click Change Track Color to improve Animal Track visibility against the background imagery.

User Guide, Questions + Comments

Help displays this document.

Questions + Comments generates an email to the WOWs Map support team.

Please ensure that:

WOWs Internal Use:

Analysis Tab