2023 SAG Award Winners

State of Alaska

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Project Goal

Alaska Department of Fish and Game (ADF&G) assesses the abundance of fish and wildlife populations using a wide array of methods and platforms, including commonly aerial surveys. The Commercial Fisheries Division within ADF&G has been working to modernize data collection methods employed during aerial surveys for Pacific herring and 5 species of Pacific salmon. This modernization effort focuses on streamlining data flow from collection through quality control and archive; digital reference maps form the basis for data collection during remote surveys using electronic tablets. The resultant workflow integrated with logical attribute—and photo—driven information capture facilitate public and stakeholder outreach by sharing survey results. The ADF&G has been using Esri products such as ArcPad for many years while conducting aerial surveys. However, in the past several years, the interest and number of Department staff using Esri Field apps is increasing.
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Business Problem Solved

Managers conducting aerial surveys in remote locations of Alaska have historically used paper maps, data sheets, and handheld GPS for location reference and data collection. Using combinations of Esri Field Apps with tablets, managers can reference their location on high-spatial resolution imagery, NOAA nautical charts, and topographic maps . Digital data collection has improved accuracy and reduced staff time post-survey removing the need to transcribe and digitize data from paper to desktop GIS. The ArcGIS Data Interoperability extension has greatly increased the flexibility to align and load AGOL collected data directly to Department databases. Post-survey, managers can view and edit survey data directly in ArcGIS Pro after syncing offline data. Survey data can be shared with stakeholders and the public post-survey in a matter of minutes. Internal dashboards have provided additional data quality and improved data sharing/outreach/project updates.

Technology Implemented

ArcGIS Online, ArcGIS Field Maps with Location Sharing, ArcGIS Survey123, ArcGIS QuickCapture, ArcGIS Experience Builder, ArcGIS Dashboards, ArcGIS Pro, ArcGIS Data Interoperability Extension

Development Team Biography

Kathy Smikrud - GIS Analyst – Juneau, AK
Andy Padilla - Fish Biologist - Fairbanks, AK
Phil Witt - Database/IT Specialist (former ADF&G IT)
Emma Hatcher - former ADF&G GIS Analyst
Aaron Dupuis/Jason Jones - Fish Biologists - Sitka, AK
Whitney Crittenden, Bo Meredith, Justin Breese - Fish Biologists - Ketchikan, AK
Shane Shepherd/Jenni Morella - Fish Biologists – Cordova, AK
Troy Thynes, Katie Taylor, Troy Thynes, Paul Salomone, Tom Kowalske - Fish Biologists - Petersburg, AK
Scott Forbes/Ray Vinzant - Fish Biologists - Juneau, AK
James Smith -Fish Biologist – Fairbanks, AK
Nicole Zeiser, Shelby Flemming - Fish Biologists - Haines, AK,
Ted Otis, Tim Blackmon - Fish Biologists - Homer, AK
Tim Sands, Phil Stacey, - Fish Biologists - Dillingham, AK
Justin Daily, Karl Wood, Paul Caldwell - Database/Programmers - Juneau, AK
Holly Krenz, Heath Kimball - Database/Programmers - Anchorage, AK